Guidelines and Standard Operating Procedures for the Supply Chain Management of Drugs Used in Mass Drug Administration of Neglected Tropical Disease Programs

One of the constraints to effective control of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) is that the needed medicines are often not available in sufficient quantities at service delivery points at the time of scheduled mass drug administration (MDAs). Supply systems for NTD drugs (NTDDs) differ from those for most other essential medicines in that NTDDs need to be delivered to selected endemic target sites on a defined schedule based on the frequency of the MDA, which could be once or twice a year. Consequently, NTDD supply chain systems need to be well designed and efficiently managed to ensure that health workers and communities have access to NTDDs and supplies, such as registers, medicines for managing adverse drug reactions (ADRs), height measuring poles, etc., at time of MDA. Availability of these items may be influenced by a variety of factors, including availability of the supplies at the central level, poor stock control, provider experience, economic influences, and transport. This guidance and standard operating procedures (SOPs) document will be valuable additional material for anyone who manages NTDDs—from program managers to service providers, community health workers (CHWs), community drug distributors (CDDs), teachers, technical assistance providers, and public- and private-sector partners. This document describes how to properly manage NTDD supplies throughout the supply chain and distribution process. The guidelines and SOPs serve as a reference document that NTD programs can use to review and enhance their own procedures for managing NTDDs and develop or refine their own SOPs to support the proper implementation of the supply chain components of MDA. These guidelines and SOPs are based on the assumption that countries already have the systems, structures, and processes in place to implement MDAs for NTDs.

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