South Sudan launched the Pharmaceutical Policy and Strategy.
The 2022 Pharmaceutical Policy and Strategy provides an overall framework for governance, regulation and programming within the health sector which has been lacking since 2006.
The Pharmaceutical Policy and Strategy was developed by the Ministry of Health in collaboration with the World Health Organization to strengthen the pharmaceutical sector in South Sudan.
It lays the foundation for building systems for sustainable access to pharmaceuticals and related health technologies. It prioritizes the medium- to long-term goals and strategies set by the government for the pharmaceutical sector.
Access to medicines is a critical component of healthcare delivery system. Hence, promoting sustainable and equitable access to medicines is the core mandate of the Ministry of Health.
In the WHO African Region, it is estimated that about 58% of the population do not have access to medicines for non-communicable diseases.
In South Sudan, access to essential medicines is a huge challenge. According to the 2018 Service Availability and Readiness Assessment Report, only 14% of health facilities had the recommended medicines.
“Universal Health Coverage can’t be achieved without access to safe, effective, quality and affordable essential medicines”, said Dr Victoria Anib Majur, the Undersecretary at the Ministry of Health South Sudan. “It’s important to have a strong regulatory body to ensure that we are regulating the medicines coming to the country”.
As much as we develop strategies and policies, implementation is more important. Dr Anib urged the Directorate to form a committee to implement the strategy. She acknowledged WHO’s continued support in developing policies and strategies for effective healthcare services.
“Access to medicines is a human right issue”, said Dr Fabian Ndenzako, WHO Representative a.i. in South Sudan. “Thanks to the generous contribution of the Canadian Government, WHO supported the Ministry of Health to develop the pharmacy policy and strategic plan for South Sudan that promotes equity and sustainability of the pharmaceutical sector”.
WHO is committed to support the Ministry of Health to enhance access to medicines as part of the efforts to build resilient health systems and achieving Universal Health Coverage and the health-related Sustainable Development Goals.
The Pharmacy Strategy is a 5 -year plan that is aligned with the Health Sector Strategic Plan.
The policy sets the standards for the safe, modern practice of pharmacy in while building community confidence and providing high quality, innovative services for patients that enhance patient care and public health.
Dr Moses Ongom, Email: ongomm [at] who.int
Dr Paula Nuer, Email: nuerjukuirp [at] who.int