Clarion Call For Health Commodity Logistics Coordination
The Federal Ministry of Health in its bid to ensure availability of health products to Nigerians especially through cost effective interventions embarked on penetration visits to 23 states of the country from November 2016 to January 2017 in four waves. This was done through the Nigeria Supply Chain Integration Project of its department of Food & Drugs Services and represents the second phase of state Procurement and Supply Management (PSM) mobilization towards formation of Logistics Management Coordination Units (LMCUs) in the directorate of Pharmaceutical Services of the State Ministry of Health.
The LMCU when fully setup in the state will coordinate logistics management across prominent disease programs (Malaria, HIV, TB, Reproductive Health and Vaccines), develop a distribution plan/matrix, coordinate Last Mile Distribution of health commodities to IDPs, communities/facilities, carryout monitoring/supervision of health facilities on commodity use and coordinate data analysis for reliable feedback and critical decision making.
The pilot phase of this intervention was in 14 states; Lagos, Sokoto, Kano, Kaduna, Oyo, Nasarawa, Imo, Anambra, Cross-River, Akwa-Ibom, Abia, Rivers, Benue and the FCT. These states have their LMCU properly organised with staff mostly domiciled in the unit, offices assigned, supported by the NSCIP with consultants to carry out health commodity coordination to a reasonable level. With a significant amount of progress already recorded in these 14 states, the NSCIP received fresh mandates by the Honourable Minister, Prof. Isaac Adewole (December, 2016) to extend the effort to the rest of the country.
The Teams’ visit to Yobe state on Tuesday 17th of January, 2017 saw His Excellency the Deputy Governor; Eng. Abubakar Aliu received the team on behalf of the Governor.
Speaking to the Deputy Governor, the NSCIP team leader; Dr. Ogaba Ogbu impressed on the need for the Executive, Legislature, Civil service and partners to rally round the state LMCU in terms of getting every health commodity stakeholder to store/pass their products through the Central Medical Stores (CMS), the executive/partners to help rehabilitate the CMS, budget line creation for the LMCU and general cooperation with the unit in the despatch of their responsibilities.
The Deputy Governor assured of improved health financing especially in getting the LMCU operational. He bemoaned the current situation of uncoordinated interventions in the state with most Donors taking their commodities straight to IDP camps and health facilities with no due capture from the state. He encouraged the state ministry of health to properly organise and lead the Partners Forum with the LMCU given all the needed support to aid coordination of the process. The State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) was called upon to fully cooperate with the State Ministry of Health as all health commodities from the Government or donors should be properly captured and coordinated for distribution to IDPs and health facilities.
The 23 states visited by the NSCIP include; Katsina, Niger, Kogi, Ebonyi, Bayelsa, Zamfara, Ondo, Adamawa, Enugu, Edo, Kebbi, Ekiti, Taraba, Plateau, Delta, Ogun, Osun, Yobe, Gombe, Bauchi, Jigawa, Kwara and Borno.