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PSS Insight: A Tool for Measuring Progressive Pharmaceutical Systems Strengthening

In 2012, when the US Agency for International Development (USAID) awarded the SIAPS Program, it tasked the program with developing a measurement framework and corresponding indicators for determining whether investments in pharmaceutical systems strengthening are contributing to the development of stronger, more sustainable pharmaceutical systems. At that time, there were no widely accepted definitions for a pharmaceutical system or pharmaceutical systems strengthening. Furthermore, there was no standardized approach for measuring progress toward stronger, more sustainable pharmaceutical systems. In 2014, SIAPS conducted a series of literature reviews and held a consultative meeting of SIAPS partners and experts in the field to propose definitions for a pharmaceutical system and pharmaceutical systems strengthening. Once these key parameters for measurement were identified, SIAPS arranged them within a framework for measurement to guide the selection of indicators and determine a basis to guide the measurement process. Once the framework was in place, an extensive review process of existing indicator-based assessment tools and manuals was undertaken to develop an indicator bank from which to select measures for the PSS Insight tool. Working with experts from Boston University School of Public Health, SIAPS selected key indicators that form the basis of a tool to measure progress in pharmaceutical systems strengthening, using defined indicator selection criteria. The resulting tool, called PSS Insight, is a web-based data management system comprising 117 indicators intended to measure progress in pharmaceutical systems strengthening, both across countries and over time.

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Strengthening Medicine Registration in Benin: A Detailed Assessment

In November 2016, at the request of USAID/Benin, SIAPS conducted a rapid assessment of the medicines registration system of the Direction de la Pharmacie, du Médicament et des Explorations Diagnostiques (DPMED) in Benin and made recommendations to address the challenges arising from its current information system. The assessment identified opportunities to improve regulatory processes for the efficient and transparent registration of medicines. The purpose of SIAPS’s technical assistance visit in August 2017 was to conduct a situational analysis regarding the findings and recommendations made after SIAPS conducted a rapid assessment in November 2016. The goal was also to develop appropriate recommendations and a plan for the implementation of Pharmadex software and the management system of the medicines registration process at DPMED, Benin.

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NTP Laboratory Network Assessment: Strategic Directions to Improve Access and Quality of TB Diagnostic Services Assessment Report

The National TB Program has embarked on the new Philippine Strategic TB Elimination Plan Phase One: 2017–2022, setting targets and objectives to significantly reduce TB mortality and prevalence by 2022. Among the key activities in the plan is to ensure the access of all priority patients to rapid TB diagnosis along with drug susceptibility testing for rifampicin. This entails the expanded deployment of the new RDTs, exemplified by Xpert, at the primary level of care. The NTP envisions using RDTs as the initial TB diagnostic test within the short term. This assessment was done to gather information on the laboratory network’s capacity to provide access to diagnostic services, particularly the new rapid TB diagnostics at the primary level of care, identify factors that serve as barriers to ensuring the provision of continuous and reliable laboratory services, and to propose actions to address the identified barriers.

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Rapport de l’enquête sur la vérification de l’utilisation finale des produits de lutte contre le paludisme au Mali, août 9-29, 2017

La présente édition de l’EUV a été réalisée août 9-29, 2017, sous la direction du PNLP dans les régions du sud du Mali. L’objectif de l’étude est de contribuer à améliorer la disponibilité, la gestion, et l’utilisation des médicaments et autres intrants antipaludiques dans les structures sanitaires publiques et parapubliques du Mali. C’est une étude de type transversal et descriptif qui s’est intéressée aux points de prestation de soins, ainsi qu’aux points de distribution et de dispensation des intrants antipaludiques dans les structures sanitaires des régions de Kayes, Koulikoro, Sikasso, Ségou, Mopti, et le district de Bamako.

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Regulatory Systems Assessment Tool

As the availability of pharmaceutical products in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) has improved in recent years, the need for functional national regulatory systems is becoming paramount in ensuring the safety, quality, and efficacy of those products. However, national regulatory authorities in LMICs struggle to fulfill their respective mandates to meet this increasing demand for their services in line with international standards. Outdated legal frameworks, inadequate staffing, inefficient processes, weak information systems, and insufficient financing are among the challenges they face. Increasingly, donors and development agencies are acknowledging the importance of regulatory systems strengthening and are looking for ways to work with national regulatory authorities to define and prioritize their system needs, identify feasible evidence-based and cost-effective system strengthening interventions, and support regulatory authorities to monitor progress toward their goals. RSAT examines the system components and regulatory functions of a national medicines regulatory system. It can be implemented by either National Medicines Regulatory Agency (NMRA) staff for the purpose of self-assessment and monitoring or independent assessors and technical assistance providers that provide support to NMRAs to pinpoint and prioritize the specific areas of the regulatory system that most need improvement to achieve greater efficiency and effectiveness. The tool is designed to populate a combination of quantitative and qualitative data from multiple pre-existing sources.

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Assessment of DPM Medicine Regulatory System, Mali

A comprehensive assessment of DPM’s medicine regulatory system was conducted September to October 2017 by SIAPS funded by USAID. The WHO Global Benchmarking Tool was used for data collection. The scope of the assessment was focused on the five regulatory functions: national regulatory systems, medicines registration and marketing authorization (MA), pharmacovigilance (PV), market surveillance and control, and clinical trial oversight (CTO).

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Disposal Initiative Allows Bangladesh Hospital to Reclaim Space, Reduce Health Risks

In Bangladesh, the Ministry’s Procurement and Logistics Management Cell (PLMC) made an assessment of the status of medical equipment that was no longer usable and explored the logistics in health facilities across the country to accelerate the disposal process. The PLMC and SIAPS conducted seven divisional workshops on condemnation of medical and non-medical items for all district- and sub-district-level health managers under the MoHFW to share the assessment findings, the disposal process, and how that process could be improved for effective logistics management as part of a hospital management system.

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Strengthening the Department of Health’s Warehouse Management System in the Philippines

The goal of warehouse operations is to satisfy client needs and requirements while effectively utilizing space, equipment, and labor. Warehouse management refers to the monitoring, control, and optimization of warehouse and transportation systems. The objectives of this assessment were to review the existing warehouse management system, including space, equipment, tools, and processes, and identify key requirements and technical specifications for the implementation of WMS technology that is tailored to the Republic of the Philippines’ public health supply system needs.

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Strengthening the Supply Chain Governance Framework for Pharmaceuticals and Health Products in the Philippines – Technical Brief

The Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services (SIAPS) Project, funded by the US Agency for International Development, helps countries promote access to safe, quality, and cost-effective pharmaceuticals and health commodities by using a system strengthening approach that engages stakeholders, builds and strengthens existing health systems, or establishes a new one, if necessary. SIAPS strengthens pharmaceutical governance by working with the Department of Health and all in-country stakeholders involved in managing the supply chain to define roles, responsibilities, and accountability as well as to identify the critical steps moving forward to implement positive changes in the system. SIAPS ensures the involvement of all partners during the whole process. The overall goal is to promote stewardship for DOH and enable continuous, sustained progress.

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Strengthening the Supply Chain Governance Framework for Pharmaceuticals and Health Products in the Philippines

The Department of Health (DOH) is ultimately responsible and accountable for ensuring that Filipinos have access to quality health services. An effective supply chain is essential for DOH to ensure that lifesaving health products are available, accessible, and effectively used for clients.  Recently, the DOH has shown its commitment by creating the Supply Chain Management Unit (SCMU) in March 2016. SIAPS conducted a thorough desk review of previous assessments and DOH’s various internal SCM policies. SIAPS also helped coordinate meetings with various DOH offices to identify and validate current experiences in SCM and to obtain recommendations to strengthen SCM governance of DOH.

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