SIAPS Namibia provides technical assistance to revise the National Medicines Policy

Participants at the 2017 pharmacists’ forum pose for a group photo with the Deputy Minister of the MOHSS, Ms. Juliet Kavetuna, in Oshakati (7th from the right, standing in the front row), Namibia on September 18, 2017. Photo credit: SIAPS Namibia staff

SIAPS Namibia staff helped the Pharmaceutical Services Division of the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MOHSS) of Namibia to revise the National Medicines Policy (NMP).

The NMP, launched in 1998 and revised in 2012, provides guidelines and development objectives for the country’s pharmaceutical sectors.[1] It provides the framework within which pharmaceutical sector priorities are set, activities are coordinated, and legislation is developed to support public health needs. It encompasses medicines regulation and control, logistics, access to medicine and rational use, and systems for monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the policy.

SIAPS technical advisors held group discussions and moderated plenary sessions to help MOHSS’ Pharmaceutical Services Division revise the NMP. These meetings were organized during the annual pharmacists’ forum, which took place September 18-23, 2017, in Oshakati, in Northeast Namibia. The forum provides a venue for pharmaceutical staff to discuss issues affecting the profession and service delivery in the public sector.

The policy under revision will influence the five-year National Pharmaceutical Master Plan that will determine activities to be implemented by the Pharmaceutical Services Division.

In addition to the NMP sessions, SIAPS presented the proposed version of the mobile Electronic Dispensing Tool (mEDT) that can enhance data collection on antiretroviral therapy (ART) at all levels of the dispensing chain, especially for decentralized ART facilities. SIAPS also took advantage of their presence at the forum to promote the MOHSS Pharmaceutical Information Dashboard for a timely reporting of ART and logistics data.

Compiled by Wezi Tjaronda, Harriet R. Kagoya and Bayobuya Phulu for SIAPS Namibia. October 2017

[1] Ofori-Adjei D, Tjipura-Tjiho D, Lates J. April 2006. Review of National Medicines Policy, Review of the Namibia Pocket Manual for Health Workers, and Determination of Desirability for National Standard Treatment Guidelines for Namibia. Submitted to the US Agency for International Development by the Rational Pharmaceutical Management Plus Center for Pharmaceutical Management. Arlington, VA: Management Sciences for Health. Available at: