Government has introduced a new scheme for funding, procurement and management of medicines and medical supplies.
Central Medical Stores Trust (CMST), Ministry of Health (MoH) and National Local Government Finance Committee (NLGFC) will be responsible for the scheme.
According to a statement from the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, signed by Secretary to the Treasury Ronald Mangani, the scheme has been developed after consultations with relevant players.
“This scheme will permit the CMST to procure medicines and medical supplies in bulk in order to address the challenges hitherto associated with the availability of the commodities in public hospitals,” reads the statement in part.
It further says the MoH and the NLGFC shall be funded on a quarterly basis, based on their consolidated cash flow provisions for central and district hospitals. The CMST shall maintain two master accounts, one for the MoH and the other for the NLGFC.
MoH and NLGFC shall ensure that CMST has commodity quantification schedules for all the hospitals, matched by their annual budgets, broken down up to item level for each hospital. Commodity requisitions to the CMST shall only be endorsed by the hospital director or the district health officer (DHO).
“Only after a quarterly reconciliation statement is signed off and validated by secretary for health, executive secretary for NLGFC and the chief executive officer of the CMST shall the secretary to the Treasury provide a subsequent quarterly payment to CMST through MoH and NLGFC,” says the statement.
Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development has since assured the general public that it will continuously monitor the performance of the new scheme.
CMST is the national pharmacy whose main functions include procurement, warehousing and distribution of approved quality and affordable essential medicines and other medical supplies to the health facilities.