Mali faces difficulty in ensuring the availability of HIV and AIDS medicines and supplies. Inadequate tools for quantifying the needs for medicines, poor donor coordination around the national HIV commodities forecasting, and an inadequate supply plan has affected not only the consensus on quantification results of HIV and AIDS commodities, but also the very commitment of donors to supply these commodities.
To improve the process of HIV and AIDS commodities quantification, USAID’s Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services (SIAPS) Program provided support to the HIV and AIDS Technical Working Group of the National Technical Committee that coordinates and monitors issues related to medicines to use the innovative Quantimed software for forecasting HIV and AIDS commodities. By providing a systematic approach to organizing and analyzing commodities data, Quantimed is designed to improve the accuracy of the forecasting and budgeting process. It facilitates the calculation of commodity needs using either a single method or a combination of any of the three primary forecasting methods: consumption, morbidity, and proxy consumption.
From December 2 to December 12, 2014, SIAPS helped the HIV Technical Working Group conduct a workshop for HIV commodities quantification for the period from October 2014 to December 2017. The group used Quantimed, along with Pipeline—a commodities supply tracking tool— and the morbidity method.
The quantification involved the following steps:
- Data needs and sources were identified
- The appropriate method for forecasting based on data available and program changes was then selected
- Identifying assumptions and building consensus on how assumptions will be applied to quantification, particularly for missing data
- Assessment of consequences from programmatic changes (scale-up, for example) or environment changes (such as revisions to treatment guidelines) that may influence demand
- Consultative workshop to validate data and assumptions
- Forecasting using data and assumptions to calculate quantities needed for a given period
- Interpretation and validation of the results
By the end of the quantification exercise, the stakeholders reached a consensus on a sound and relevant supply plan for HIV and AIDS commodities for the next three years.
The overall cost of this supply plan is estimated at CFA 5 billion to buy HIV and AIDS commodities for the next three years.