Strengthening the Health Supply Chain in Tanzania- MSD And Jazia PVS Joining Forces to Provide Population with Health Commodities
Introduction: Pharmaceutical supply chain management in Tanzania has received substantial attention to address the shortage of medicines at health facilities. As a health system intervention, a public-private partnership (PPP) was established. A prime vendor system (Jazia PVS) was piloted with a contracted regional private supplier to complement the national health supply through Medical Stores Department (MSD) in public facilities. Jazia PVS pilot regions showed significantly increased availability of health commodities. Consequently, in 2018 the government decided to roll out the Jazia PVS to all areas of Tanzania's mainland.
Methodology: The President's Office of Regional Administration and Local Government (PORALG), together with the HPSS project, implemented the national roll-out. Funding for scaling up was provided by the government and dedicated basket funds. A 12-step approach for implementation was applied, including cascade training from the national to the facility level—one private vendor selected by tendering signed a contract with the respective regional authority. A national implementation guideline and a guide for vendors were elaborated.
Results: The Jazia PVS was expanded from three pilot regions to all 26 regions of Tanzania mainland, covering 185 councils, 5381 health facilities, and a total population of 51'400'000. Fourteen private Tanzanian vendors provide supply services. The boards in the regions manage the Jazia PVS operating within the regional government structure. An average monthly procurement volume of 2.3bio Tsh from PVs assists MSD in fulfilling ever-increasing orders. Challenges include insufficient adherence to standard operating procedures and contractual terms by both users and vendors.
Conclusion: The national implementation of Jazia PVS strengthens the national supply chain of MSD by providing an option in case of supply challenges built on government policies. Integrating private suppliers in regional PPPs enhances the role of the private sector in a highly regulated, cost and quality-conscious manner. Finally, the Tanzanian population benefits from improved access to health commodities.
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