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Training Workshop on Quantification with Quantimed and PipeLine Tools in Freetown, Sierra Leone

The purpose, objectives, and activities of this program are designed to reflect the Government of Sierra Leone’s Health Sector Recovery Plan. Specifically, SIAPS will provide support for strengthening the supply chain system, including capacity-building activities that focus on district-and peripheral-unit levels to assist in restarting programs of the Ministry of Health and Sanitation (MOHS); the DDMS (which is responsible for coordinating and providing pharmaceutical services, including promoting rational use of medicines); the National Pharmaceutical Procurement Unit; and the Pharmacy Board of Sierra Leone.

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Restructuring the Directorate for Drugs and Medical Supplies

The Directorate for Drugs and Medical Supplies (DDMS) plays a key role in providing technical guidance and setting strategic direction in policy formulation, service delivery, standards, laws and regulations, and objectives for the pharmaceutical sector in Sierra Leone. It is also involved in stakeholders’ collaborations and coalition building, resource mobilization and deployment of resources, and monitoring and oversight. SIAPS identified DDMS as the MOHS entity well placed to be capacitated to implement and sustain the interventions SIAPS put in place. It is therefore necessary to review and finalize the DDMS structure at all levels to reflect this expanded role, especially with regard to the ongoing decentralization process, the capacity that must be developed, and aligning DDMS’ work plan with SIAPS. As part of its technical assistance to DDMS, SIAPS supported revision of the treatment registers and the report, request, and issue voucher. SIAPS also provided technical assistance in the training of trainers and national cascade training for introducing the newly developed treatment register.

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Storage Improvement of Peripheral Health Units in Four Districts in Sierra Leone

Proper storage conditions and inventory control have a positive effect on medicine quality, data/recording quality, transparency, and the prevention of loss and expiries that lead to wastage. Medicines can lose their potency over time, and the substances that remain as they break down can be harmful. Poor and disorganized storage can lead to deterioration and result in stock-outs, overstocking, and expiries as personnel will not know what medicines are available. The purpose of the improvement is to prevent early degrading of medicines and improve reporting and stock management practices to create visibility and transparency. It will also help in making timely decisions in cases of stock-out or overstocking.

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Continuous Results Monitoring and Support System

This is the report of the first continuous results monitoring and support system (CRMS) exercise in Bombali District, which was conducted in May 2016. The purpose of the report is to highlight the findings and observations of the CRMS exercise. A total of 104 health facilities (HFs) (one hospital, 18 community health centers (CHCs), 57 community health posts (CHPs), 26 maternal and child health posts (MCHPs), and two clinics) were assessed using a comprehensive checklist based on selected service and system indicators. The CRMS exercise examined different indicators that focused on stock availability; consumption; expiry; number of patients treated; availability and performance of pharmaceutical information tools; storage conditions; staffing; training; and supervision.

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SIAPS Sierra Leone End of Project Report

Project dates: September 2015-December 2017

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Strengthening Governance in Pharmaceutical Systems: A Compendium of Country Case Studies

SIAPS and its predecessor programs have assisted numerous countries in strengthening governance to promote robust decision making, enhance accountability, reduce opportunities for corruption, and improve efficiencies to enable better access to and use of quality-assured medicines. This compendium draws on these experiences and provides a collection of examples of strategies and approaches for strengthening governance in pharmaceutical systems. The compendium highlights accumulated insights into factors that may have enabled or constrained the success of governance improvement initiatives. The intention is to systematically bolster knowledge, in alignment with USAID’s collaborating, learning, and adapting approach, so that stakeholders may examine the applicability of lessons learned and apply them in different settings to maximize resources and attain better development results. The compendium begins by defining governance, then explains its importance in pharmaceutical systems and introduces the framework SIAPS has used to guide its governance strengthening activities. It presents eight case studies on SIAPS’ work in enhancing governance in pharmaceutical systems, summarizes challenges commonly encountered and lessons learned, and closes with some reflections on the usefulness of SIAPS’ governance-strengthening framework.

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Promoting safe and appropriate medicine use in Sierra Leone

Irrational medicine use and poor pharmaceutical management are widespread problems throughout all levels of Sierra Leone’s health system. Misuse, underuse, and overuse of medicines are particularly worrying because they contribute to the rise of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and threaten the effective prevention and treatment of infections caused by bacteria, parasites, and viruses. Recognizing that coordinated […]

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Supporting drug and therapeutics committees in Sierra Leone to promote safe, appropriate medicine use

Irrational medicine use and poor pharmaceutical management at all levels are widespread problems in many developing countries, including Sierra Leone. Misuse, underuse, and overuse of medicines; weak systems that compromise medicine safety; the waste of scarce resources due to expiry; and the rise of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) are particularly worrying because they directly affect health outcomes. Because of a lack of sound data for decision making, health workers may need to select products for medicines lists, supply, and prescribing based on observation and preferences. SIAPS is facilitating the selection of appropriate, safe products to be procured and used at different levels of the public health system. Promoting rational medicine use cuts down on waste, improves health outcomes, and helps prevent the spread of AMR.

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Leadership Development Program Training to Strengthen Pharmaceutical Management in Sierra Leone

In May 2017, SIAPS held a Leadership Development Program (LDP) training to build the capacity of the Directorate of Drugs and Medical Supplies (DDMS), district and hospital pharmacists, and SIAPS field staff. It was the first such training in the country.  The program aims to train pharmacists on basic principles and practices of good leadership, management, and governance to help them identify challenges like system and budget constraints—and to lead their teams in handling them with maximum efficiency, collaboration, and transparency. Another training goal is to help pharmaceutical managers optimize the SIAPS-supported Continuous Results Monitoring and Support System (CRMS), which has been implemented nationwide. The training created a pool of local LDP facilitators who can extend their knowledge to other DDMS staff and to pharmacists throughout all 13 districts in Sierra Leone.

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A Rebirth of Sierra Leone’s Pharmaceutical System

When the World Health Organization declared the Ebola epidemic over on November 7, 2015, about 40% of the 8,704 people infected had died. The country’s health system, or what was left of it after a decade of civil war that ended in 2002, was ailing, too. Some health workers had become ill or left, leaving […]

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