USAID Afya Ugavi lauds Nakuru for best practices in Health Products and Technologies Management
Written by Ruth Magak
Nakuru County has made remarkable strides in the management of Health Products and Technologies (HPT) Units, demonstrating a commitment to providing quality healthcare services to its citizens. The establishment of an effective HPT Unit in the County has been a key driver of this success. These units are responsible for the procurement, storage, and distribution of essential medicines, medical supplies, and equipment in the counties.
The establishment of an effective HPT Unit in the County has led to a significant reduction in the stock-out rate for essential medicines, from 47.5% in 2019 to 17.5% in 2021, according to the Kenya Health Information System (KHIS). This has translated into improved health outcomes for the citizens of Nakuru County.
The Nakuru County HPT Unit has achieved this through the implementation of several interventions aimed at improving the management of HPTs. This includes the development of standard operating procedures (SOPs) for the management of HPTs, as well as the implementation of a robust data management system to track the availability and distribution of health products and technologies. The Department of Health Services has also invested in the training of its staff to build their capacity in the management, forecasting, and quantification of HPTs.
USAID Afya Ugavi has played a crucial role in contributing to the strengthening of Health Products and Technologies Management. USAID Afya Ugavi provides technical assistance and support to County Governments in the establishment and management of HPT Units, as well as the development and implementation of policies and guidelines.
H. E Governor Susan Kihika in Nakuru has shown political goodwill in supporting the HPT Unit and has provided the necessary resources and infrastructure to enable the HPT Unit to perform its functions effectively. This includes the allocation of funds for the procurement of essential medicines, medical supplies, and equipment, as well as the provision of storage facilities and vehicles for the re-distribution of these items to health facilities across the County.
In addition to Nakuru County’s efforts, the partnership between the County and the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA) has also played a significant role in improving the management of health products and technologies. This partnership has enabled the County to access quality and affordable medical supplies, which has contributed to the reduction of stock-out rates for essential medicines and medical supplies.
According to Dr. James Riungu, the Chief of the Party for USAID Afya Ugavi, “Effective management of health products and technologies is critical for improving access to quality healthcare services. Our partnership with County Governments and other stakeholders in the health sector is aimed at strengthening the management of health products and technologies in Kenya, and we are proud to have supported Nakuru County in this regard.”
The establishment of HPT Units in County Governments, coupled with partnerships such as the one between Nakuru County and USAID Afya Ugavi, has the potential to significantly improve the management of health products and technologies in Kenya. “It is therefore important for County Governments to prioritize the establishment and strengthening of HPT Units to ensure that essential medicines, medical supplies, and equipment are available and accessible to all who need them”, said Dr. Riungu.