Uganda has started reaping the benefits of a partnership with the United States in terms of strengthened transparency in the management of public medicines and health supplies.
The U.S. government helped NMS build a strong and modern health supply chain system which has enabled the government agency to ably run its procurement, storage and distribution of medical supplies.
U.S. Ambassador to Uganda, Natalie Brown says Washington is committed to strengthening and improving procurement, storage, and distribution of health commodities by NMS.
Natalie explained that the United States government has invested significant funding to establish and operationalize the NMS+ Enterprise Resource Planning, or ERP, information technology system.
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“This system will improve efficiency in the areas of procurement, warehousing, and distribution, and will provide vital information on financial and human resource operations at NMS,” said Natalie at the opening of the NMS warehouse in Kajjansi in 2022.
“The ERP system will reduce human error from a paper-based system, enable the NMS to immediately receive orders electronically, ensure that facilities are adequately supplied with the right commodities at the right time, and help to minimize pilferage,” said the Ambassador.
The Inspector General of Government reported that Uganda loses Shs 25 million each day to corruption and vice, depriving citizens of vital services, including access to health care and medicine.
The United States government is also training local governments and health facilities to manage the public health supply chain and ensure continuous availability of life-saving essential medicines in Uganda.
“ In the past year, we procured, distributed, and installed 535 computers at 350 Uganda health facilities as part of our efforts to digitize the supply chain across the country,” said Brown.
The introduction of modern technology to combat theft of medicines in public health facilities also requires popular vigilance by leaders and locals.
Dr Ayume urged MPs and local authorities to keep a watch over NMS delivery schedules and reports from patients, saying the root cause of theft should be addressed in addition to the implementation of NMS+.