Ministry of Medical Services: Press Statement on the Status of Medical Supplies in Public Health Facility

The attention of the Ministry of Medical Services has been drawn to the recent media reports on shortage of medical supplies in public health facilities and wish to clarify as follows:-

The Ministry has a social responsibility of providing quality, accessible and affordable health care services to Kenyans through established health systems.

Kenya Medical Supplies Agency (KEMSA) under the Ministry of Medical Services has been mandated to procure and supply quality medical supplies to public health facilities in line with Legal Notice No. 17 of 2000. It is also required to replenish stocks of medical supplies in all public health facilities in the country.

The Ministry's responsibility is to supervise KEMSA to ensure it provides effective and efficient procurement and distribution of medical supplies and overall discharge of its mandate. In this regard, in July 2008, the Ministry constituted a National Task Force to look into the managerial and operational problems and propose ways to address them.

The Ministry is currently implementing the Task Force recommendations. A case in point is that the Ministry has handed over procurement of medical supplies and equipment to KEMSA, restructuring of management, streamlining supply chains and distribution of medical supplies directly to over 4,000 health facilities in the country on regular and scheduled basis.

That notwithstanding, the Ministry is in the process of constituting a new board to oversee operations at KEMSA and bring about sanity in the supply chain of medical supplies in the country.

Current situation

i. The Ministry has adequate stocks of essential drugs (basic drugs for common ailments) which will last up to December 2009. There are no stock-outs of essential drugs experienced in the country as reported by the media.That notwithstanding, strategies have been put in place to ensure adequate supplies during the short and long term period.

ii. The Ministry has enough drug-kits (basic package of drugs for each level) to last up to September 2009. Procurement of additional drug-kits has been initiated by KEMSA and deliveries will be done four months prior to stock-outs.

iii. We have enough stock of Anti-retroviral drugs for HIV and AIDS patients to last for seven months. In addition, KEMSA has procured additional ARVs, whose first batch is expected by this month while the next batch will be delivered by May 2009.

iv. The Ministry has over seven months stock of anti-malarial drugs. In addition, there is over one year stock of anti-tuberculosis drugs.

v. We have enough stock of contraceptives to last up to December 2009. Besides that, procurement of pills, implants, intra uterine devices, injectable contraceptives and emergence contraceptives has been finalized and deliveries are expected by May 2009.

vi. Currently we have adequate stock of vaccines and plans have been put in place to ensure uninterrupted supply up to December 2009.

vii. There is adequate stock of non-pharmaceuticals to last until July 2009. Hospitals have been instructed to supplement any additional needs using cost sharing funds whenever need arises.

viii. Finally, the Ministry has already cleared Kshl .2 billion of the Kshl .6 billion owed to KEMSA suppliers carried over from last financial year. We shall clear the remaining Ksh400 million in the next 2 weeks

In order to ensure adequate stock of supplies in the country, the Ministry will continue to build capacity of KEMSA to respond to emergencies and ensure timely procurement. Capacity will also be built at the hospitals to facilitate a smooth distribution network.

The KEMSA team is doing everything possible to fast track deliveries to hospitals and liaising with development partners to ensure timely supply of drugs to health facilities.

As a Ministry we wish to reassure the public that we are committed to ensuring availability of medical supplies in all public health facilities countrywide. We are also working with other government departments to improve the staff working environment and ensure equitable distribution of skilled health professionals in the country.

Prof, James L. Ole Kiyiapi,
4th March 2009

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2 Responses to Ministry of Medical Services: Press Statement on the Status of Medical Supplies in Public Health Facility

Nina said...

the hygiene quality of medical supplies always remain an issue in most of the counties as there is not much budget for health sector.

Allen said...

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