IMPROVING PHARMACEUTICAL SERVICES AND CARE
The Ecumenical Pharmaceutical Network (EPN) is moving full steam ahead with the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) capacity building programs through valuable partnership throughout Africa and the continued support of our donor, Bread for the World. From the 7th to 11th of May 2017, at the Sherabel Hotel in N’Djamena, Chad Ecumenical Pharmaceutical Network (EPN) and Evangelical Association for Health in Chad (AEST) jointly run a capacity building program on improving pharmaceutical services and care through improved access to quality assured essential medicines and appropriate use to maximize outcomes.
The overall purpose of this activity was to facilitate the ability of AEST, a faith-based health system in Chad, to offer competitive pharmaceutical services for maternal and child health (MCH). The expected outcomes from this activity are; improved access to medicines and increased knowledge on issues related to MCH at AEST health facilities. The former outcome is to be realized as post-training action plans are implemented over the next six months. An end line evaluation will be done thereafter to determine the extent with which the outcome would have been realized. Achievement of the latter outcome will be determined after pre- and post evaluation.
The strategies to realize the desired outcomes are strengthening procurement & supply management (PSM) systems and medicine and therapeutics committees (MTCs), consultative meetings with drug supply organizations (DSOs) to explore approaches to make medicines more available and affordable and building capacity on PSM, MTC, rational use of medicines and paediatric formulations.
This workshop/ training brought together twenty (20) participants - 3 women and 17 men respectively. The participants included medical doctors, nurses and midwives from 3 hospitals and 17 healthcare centers under AEST from all over the country. The training/workshop facilitation style included expert lectures, discussion of case studies, group discussions and open interactions between facilitators and participants. These expert facilitators included pharmacists, gynaecologists and paediatricians. In the situation analysis (and subsequent training of healthcare workers) it is imperative that reality of an acute shortage of pharmacy personnel in Chad be addressed.As it stands now, the quality of pharmaceutical services is highly compromised. Moreover, the black market for medicines in Chad thrives, in part due to the inefficiency of the drug regulatory authority. The populace in Chad is, thus at risk of exposure to substandard, spurious, falsely labeled, falsified and counterfeit medicines.
We at EPN are committed to be an advocate for access to just and compassionate quality pharmaceutical services for all as we take on the roll of overseeing and coordinating the implementation, through our partners, by providing best practice knowledge and support in sustainable pharmaceutical services. We will continue to update all our members, stakeholders, partners and general public on the milestones, outcomes and findings of this crucial intervention in Chad.