More than 800,000 people living with HIV/Aids are set to benefit from the transfer of anti-retroviral therapy (ART) supplied by USAid. The supplies will be handled by the Ministry of Health through the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (Kemsa) and National Aids & STI Control Programme (Nascop).
Speaking in Nairobi yesterday, Medical Services deputy director Jackson Kioko said Kemsa, which is the government agency responsible for medical procurement, warehousing and distribution, will now align themselves under the devolved governments.
“The new business model will ensure it fits the needs of devolved system of government, making ART accessible throughout the country,” he said. Kemsa CEO John Munyu said they have adopted a ‘supermarket model’ which will enable efficiency and faster access to the drugs.
“The counties will now be able to electronically order and monitor the drugs from any chemist or pharmacy. The success is bouyed by the development of an online ordering and consumption ordering system,” he said.
Munyu said the online order portal established will enable county medical representatives to keep track of their orders in real-time through a portal which has eliminated the long manual ordering process which faced many challenges including taking weeks or months for Kemsa to receive order forms, under supply and over supply of commodities due to data inaccuracies in reporting and ordering and poor interpretation.
“We have significantly reduced our turnaround time from four weeks to approximately four days depending on orders, which has in turn seen an increase in demand from the counties by between 50 per cent and 60 per cent,” Munyu.
The Kenya Pharma contractor procured, warehoused and distributed lifesaving ARVs for about 400,000 people and opportunistic infection medicines for over 800,000 people.