MSH's approach to pharmaceutical management ensures sustainability and strengthened local capacity.

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MSH Global Health Impact
February 2016 (Issue 2)

Pharmaceutical Management: A Systems approach to Saving Lives

{Photo credit: Warren Zelman}
Photo: Warren Zelman

Medicines are a critical component of quality health care. In fact, most of the leading causes of death and disability in low- and middle-income countries could be prevented or treated with the appropriate use of affordable, effective medicines.

Yet, about two billion people -- one third of the world’s population -- lack consistent access to essential medicines. Fake and substandard medicines exacerbate the problem. When these people fall ill and seek treatment, too often they end up with small quantities, high prices, poor quality, and the wrong drug. This leads to prolonged suffering, and even death.

Management Sciences for Health (MSH) is a global leader on pharmaceutical management and universal health coverage (UHC). MSH’s expertise in strengthening pharmaceutical management in low- and middle-income countries is built around a systems approach that emphasizes sustainability and strengthened local capacity -- ensuring lasting changes in the systems that support greater access to and use of quality medicines and related pharmaceutical services. This country-led, country-owned, systems approach is paying off in countries across the globe where major strides are being taken toward UHC.


Beyond the Supply Chain: Stronger Pharmaceutical Management Systems Help Countries Achieve Health for All

by Francis Aboagye-Nyame
Photo credit: Warren Zelman
The same trademarks of health systems strengthening are needed to make health—and medicines—for all a reality. Policy makers attempting to establish and maintain UHC programs need a sound understanding of the pharmaceutical sector and system components to ensure ready access to medicines and commodities.

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Photo: Warren Zelman

Enabling Improved Patient Safety in Resource-limited Settings: New Tool for Pharmacovigilance

by Parambir Gill
[Photo: Warren Zelman]
A new web-based application developed by MSH through USAID’s SIAPS program helps clinicians, regulatory bodies, and implementing partners in low- and middle-income countries monitor the safety of medicines by addressing the entire data collection, data analysis, and reporting process.

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Photo: Warren Zelman

Increasing HIV Testing and Counseling through Improved Health Commodities Management: Kwale County, Kenya

{Photo: Mark Tuschman}
With support from the USAID-funded, MSH-led Health Commodities and Services Management (HCSM) project, a hospital in Kwale County, Kenya, increased the number of inpatients tested for HIV from 46 percent in 2014 to 76 percent in 2015.

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Photo: Mark Tuschman


Managing Medicines Benefits, Making Universal Health Coverage a Reality: A Conversation with Kwesi Eghan

by Julia Marion
[Photo: Warren Zelman]
Photo: Warren Zelman

MSH’s Kwesi Eghan describes how better management of medicines benefits can help countries make health for all a reality.

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Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services (SIAPS) Program

{Photo: Warren Zelman}
Photo: Warren Zelman

Now in its fourth year, the USAID-funded SIAPS program, implemented by MSH, works with partners in 40 countries to assure the availability and use of quality pharmaceutical products and effective pharmaceutical services to achieve better health outcomes.

SIAPS uses a health systems strengthening approach that supports and integrates all core functions of country health systems for greater health impact. Here are four of many examples of SIAPS’ critical health impact.

Interfacing RxSolution with a Biometric Verification System to Improve Patient Records Management in South Africa

by Bright Phiri, Katelyn Payne, Sifiso Mahlaba, and Jean-Pierre Sallet
Photo: SIAPS South Africa
RxSolution, an integrated computerized pharmaceutical information management system developed and managed by SIAPS, is helping health care personnel in 24 Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality facilities manage patients’ medical history and monitor medicines stock and use.

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Photo: SIAPS South Africa

Streamlining Medicines Registration: Pharmadex Launches in Mozambique

[SIAPS Mozambique]
With Pharmadex, a SIAPS-supported, web-based tool, Mozambique's Ministry of Health can now manage medicines registration applications in one centralized online system.

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Photo: SIAPS Mozambique

Namibia: Pharmacy Assistants Trained to Deliver Quality HIV and AIDS Pharmaceutical Services

by Evans Sagwa
Namibia [Photo: SIAPS Namibia]
Through SIAPS, MSH has helped the Namibian Ministry of Health and Social Services establish a quality management system for training pharmacist assistants, such as Martin Mandumbwa (pictured).

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Photo: SIAPS Namibia

OSPSANTE: A New Tool for Tracking Health Commodities in Mali

SIAPS supported the Mali Ministry of Health in designing and rolling out a web-based dashboard that combines logistics and patients' information in the same platform, providing an early warning system for key public health priority programs, including malaria, maternal and child health, and family planning.

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Share the SIAPS interactive infographic

SIAPS infographic

Interactive infographic


Annual Report, Program Year 4

More News

Afghanistan: Establishing a Logistics Management Information System for Improved Decision Making on Medicines and Commodities

map of Afghanistan
The Afghan Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) is coordinating pharmaceutical logistics data collection and dissemination across provinces through a new pharmaceutical logistics management information system. By allowing the MoPH to better track commodities, medicines can be redistributed when needed, stock-outs can be prevented, and the government can better predict its future procurement and budget needs.

New eLearning Courses on Antimicrobial Resistance, Good Governance in Pharmaceutical Sector

Good Governance in the Management of Medicines and Antimicrobial Resistance (Part 2) -- two new, free online courses authored by MSH through SIAPS -- are now available on USAID’s Global Health eLearning Center.

Tailoring Tactics to Tackle Chronic Disease in Low-income Countries

Dr. Quick interview {Photo: Novartis}
Healthcare expert and MSH President & CEO, Dr. Jonathan D. Quick discusses solutions to address the rapid rise of chronic illnesses in the developing world with Novartis.
Photo: Novartis


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Stronger health systems. Greater health impact.

Our Mission

Saving lives and improving health
of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people
by closing the gap between knowledge and action in public health.
We envision a world where everyone has the opportunity for a healthy life.
GuidestarManagement Sciences for Health (MSH) uses proven approaches developed over 40 years to help leaders, health managers, and communities in developing nations build stronger health systems for greater health impact. We work to save lives by closing the gap between knowledge and action in public health. Since its founding in 1971, MSH has worked in over 150 countries with policymakers, health professionals, and health care consumers to improve the quality, availability, and affordability of health services.

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