Important Notice to Kenya Pharma Customers
Kenya Pharma would like to notify all ordering health facilities that our warehousing sub-contractor, Phillips Healthcare Services Ltd. will be closed from December 20, 2013 to January 2, 2014 for Christmas and New Year holidays. Please note that all orders and reports should be sent to Kenya Pharma by December 5, 2013 so that our order management team can process the last orders on 13th December 2013. Please send in your orders by the December 5, 2013 and ensure you have adequate buffer stock to cover the warehouse closure and festive season. The Kenya Pharma Management takes this opportunity to extend cordial season’s greetings to all its customers and partners.
Pumwani Maternity Hospital Receives Donation worth 1.9 Million Shillings from Kenya Pharma
On October 31st, 2013 the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through the Kenya Pharma project donated a back-up generator to Pumwani Maternity Hospital. The generator was handed over to the Hospital by Rene Berger from the USAID Kenya office and Steve Hawkins, Kenya Pharma’s chief of Party. The Nairobi City County Deputy Governor Mr Jonathan Mueke who was present at the Hospital to launch the use of digitized birth records, received the donation on behalf of the Hospital and the Nairobi Municipality which it serves. Also present to witness the handover was Ruth Njoroge Kenya Pharma’s Director of Technical Coordination and Jackson Kariithi the Director of Operations. The 27.5 KVA generator will be used by Pumwani Hospital’s to provide emergency back-up power to the theatre department. This level of support, valued at nearly 1.9 million shillings, will directly benefit the mothers and babies being served by the maternity facility. The equipment is expected to provide timely services in the theatre, even when power disruptions occur. The generator is a USAID asset purchased by Kenya Pharma project to cater for the frequent power outages at the project’s previous premises before relocation to a building with a power backup system and therefore no longer needing the generator. The donation is not the only support that USAID has provided to Pumwani Hospital. Through Kenya Pharma project, USAID also provides much needed HIV/AIDS drugs to the Hospital.
One baby’s Christmas present from the people of the United States
Kenya Pharma is one of the largest single health programs operated by the US Government, supporting well over 300,000 HIV/AIDS patients who are served through more than 600 sites in Kenya. You would hardly expect this program to respond to the specific needs of a single individual. Nonetheless, we received information about a 4-month old baby girl in the Intensive Care Unit at Nairobi Hospital who was in desperate need of a particular antiretroviral medicine - Kaletra. Originally created by Abbott Pharmaceuticals, Kaletra is a combination of Lopinavir and Ritonavir and is available as a liquid formulation. It is included on the Government of Kenya’s list of available pediatric medicines. The trouble is that, while government-sponsored programs have Kaletra, the private sector seems to have run out of stock.
When Kenya Pharma received this unusual request, a series of quick e-mails and phone calls followed to determine if it was possible for us to respond to this urgent need. The necessary paperwork was quickly approved by both management and USAID. In less than 24 hours, one pack of Kaletra was hand-delivered to the delighted pharmacist at Nairobi Hospital by a Kenya Pharma senior manager.
May we all have such a Merry Christmas.
Mbirikani AID Village Clinics closes down
One of the sterling service delivery points that Kenya Pharma supplies HIV commodities has closed down. Mbirikani AID Village Clinics closed formally ended its services at the end of November 2012. The facility has provided care and treatment to more than 10,000 people living with HIV through provision of Antiretroviral therapy, prevention of mother to child transmission of the virus, treatment of opportunistic infections and supplemental feeding programs to the community in Kajiado County, Lokitoktok District. The facility started as a mobile clinic 12 years ago and gradually grew to include a fixed-base medical center and comprehensive outreach programme providing critical health services to a population of about 70,000 people in its catchment area. “We should all be extremely proud of the great progress and significant impact made in addressing the challenges of disease during our time in Mbirikani. Literally thousands of lives from the immediate area and from a far larger geographic area have been saved”, says Ann Lurie, the AID Village Clinics’ founder in a farewell message on the facility’s website. Kenya Pharma has supplied HIV commodities to the Mbirikani Clinic since 2009. Closure of the facility raises about how its former patients will receive the medicines they need. The facility also has a large stock of medicines including supplies ordered in November. Dr Onyango, the Health Care Administrator at AID Village Clinics, has assured Kenya Pharma that although the facility officially closed in November will continue dispensing medicines to its patients until the end of December while making arrangement to have them transferred to receive services at other sites. Dr Onyango says that AID Village Clinics will continue to dispense ARVs until the end of December. A major challenge will be to find facilities that can easily be reached by the patients; the nearest hospital to the Mbirikani Clinic is Lokitoktok District Hospital about 70km away. Kenya Pharma will monitor this transition to keep track of where the patients are transferred to and to ensure that unused commodities are redistributed to other facilities. For more information see http://www.aidvillageclinics.org
Kenya Pharma Pitches for Availability of High Quality Pharmaceutical Products
Kenya Pharma is a proponent of the availability of good quality pharmaceutical products in the country. At a meeting of the Kenya Association of Pharmaceutical Industry (KAPI), the Kenya Pharma’s Director of Technical Coordination, Ruth Njoroge, spoke on the importance of ensuring that highest quality of pharmaceutical products manufactured and imported into Kenya. She was addressing KAPI members attending the Association’s monthly meeting held at the Serena hotel on 29th November 2012. In her presentation, Ruth outlined the areas that Kenya Pharma wished to collaborate with KAPI members to to address concerns about poor quality medicines in Kenya. She informed the meeting participants that Kenya Pharma’s hoped to expand its supplier base to include local companies that comply with international good manufacturing and distribution practices. Ruth encouraged the companies represent at the meeting to bid for the products indicated in Kenya Pharma’s catalogue. In response to the presentation, Dr Mwatu, the Chairperson of the KAPI Executive Committee thanked Kenya Pharma for the information and the invitation for closer collaboration. He noted that KAPI was also interested and concerned about post market surveillance, pharmacovigilance, counterfeits, substandard medicines and illegal trade and said that the Association appreciated Kenya Pharma’s active role in these areas.
Celebrating ISO Certification
Kenya Pharma celebrated achieving ISO Quality Management Systems 9001:2008 certification at a grand luncheon held at Sarova Panafric hotel in Nairobi on 20 September 2012. The certification was awarded by Det Norske Veritas (DNV) which conducted a thorougth audit of the project’s management systems during the July.
Addressing the Kenya Pharma staff, friends and partners, the project’s chief of party, Steve Hawkins lauded the efforts and hard work of the entire Kenya Pharma staff team over a period of almost two years, to develop and get the Quality Management System in place. He also acknowledged the support received from Chemonics International, noting in particular the encouragement received from Richard Dreiman the Chemonics President and CEO, Jamey Butcher the Senior Vice President for East Africa, as well as the Home Office team which provided invaluable guidance for the project team in Kenya. He also expressed gratitude for the support received from the project’s client, USAID.
The chief of party described the certification as a significant achievement. “Today marks a big moment for Kenya Pharma and for Chemonics International […/] Chemonics International became the first ISO 9001 certified organization within the international development community back in 2010 and now the USAID | Kenya Pharma project has become the first ISO 9001 certified project within Chemonics.”
He noted that certification was more than just a hollow accomplishment and explained that the achievement is important for three reasons: first, it reflects Kenya Pharma’s dedication to quality; second, it represents the project’s search for continuous improvement; and third, it provides a key element in ensuring sustainability through documentation of activities. In reference to Chemonics’ basic model of development – build, operate, transfer – Steve Hawkins noted that the ISO process will be a key component in supporting the kind of sustainability effort captured within this model. The chief of party recalled a conversation that he had with, Dr William Maina, the head of NASCOP two months ago; during this conversation Dr Maina had said “This Kenya Pharma model seems to be working very well. We must try to capture it so we can apply it more broadly throughout the sector”.
Amongst that distinguished guests that joined Kenya Pharma in this celebrations were: Dr William Maina of NASCOP, Dr Ali Arale the Acting Director of the National Quality Control Laboratory (NQCL), Rene Berger the leader of the HIV/AIDS team at USAID-Kenya, Mukesh Mehta the Managing Director of Phillips Health Services Ltd., DHL Kenya’s Business Group Manager Joe Mutuku, and several other representatives from Kenya Pharma’s partners, collaborators and customers.
Kenya Pharma holds its annual stakeholders meeting
On Wednesday July 25, Kenya Pharma held its third annual stakeholders meeting at the Panafric hotel. The meeting, which is designed to collect input into Kenya Pharma’s work planning process for the coming implementation year (Project Year 4) included over 60 participants from our community of clients, implementing partners, and government. Following plenary presentations on this past year’s activities and challenges, the participants broke into discussion groups centered around four thematic areas. Some of the major points that came out of each of these discussion groups are listed below:
Forecasting, Quantification, Procurement and Supply Chain Theme –
In terms of addressing the gap between KP- and KEMSA-supported sites, we are being encouraged to work to ensure that KEMSA has adequate stocks at the central level, work with KEMSA staff to increase their capacity to rationalize orders, and continue helping facilities improve the accuracy of their reporting.
- In terms of our contribution toward improvement in the overall national supply chain, we are being encouraged to coordinate more with KEMSA in the evaluation, rating, and monitoring of supplier performance.
- For the sake of improvements in national forecasting and quantification efforts, we are being encouraged to either undertake, or support MSH in undertaking, quarterly inventory management activities for sites.
- Also in terms of supporting inventory practices throughout the country, we are being encouraged to consider the contribution that strategically located regional storage facilities might make.
Quality Assurance Theme –
- We are being encouraged to support the design and development of Laboratory Management Information Systems for both MEDS and NQCL.
- We are being asked to organize (in collaboration with MSH and possibly PQM) forums to engage the SDPs in pharmacovigilance activities and invite PPB to conduct training and sensitization activities at these forums.
- We are being encouraged to work through our field teams to identify programs or sites that might be examples of practices for PPB to work with.
- Throughout the QA arena, we are being encouraged to increase and improve our communications and accessibility of information.
Customer Service and Collaboration Theme –
- For Improving SDP capacity to monitor and report on supply chain issues, the discussion focused around harmonization of tools and increasing staff capability. There was also discussion of the need to continue rationalization of sites in terms of distribution (converting large satellite sites into ordering sites).
- For Improving Customer Service, we were encourage to continue our current practices, help SDPs share their experiences with each other, and provide increased support for private providers. We were also encouraged to reduce the frequency of changes in presentation and supplier for the same drug.
- To Improve stakeholder collaboration, we were encouraged to increase our sharing of information such as reports and presentations, particularly through the e-SCM.
- In terms of documenting the Kenya Pharma model, we were encouraged to improve the documentation of our challenges and solutions and to share this documentation more widely through the e-SCM
Communications, data for decision-making and e-SCM Theme –
- We were encouraged to work through the field team to provide capacity enhancement on data analysis and use at SDP and program level.
- We are being encouraged to continue working with CHAI on the integration of e-SCM and ADT.
- We are being encouraged to continue to work with NASCOP and the KEMSA Support program on the integration of the e-SCM into national LMIS efforts.
- We are being encouraged to work with PPB to create a pharmacovigilence portal within the e-SCM.
- We are being encouraged to continue the development of the e-SCM as an information sharing tool among the programs and SDPs (for stock redistribution, as an example).
The plenary presentations have also been uploaded to this website and can be found here
Kenya Pharma celebrates equipment hand-over with NQCL
On July 12, Kenya Pharma celebrated the completion of a donation of significant laboratory equipment with the National Quality Control Laboratory (NQCL). The equipment, funded by USAID through the Kenya Pharma Project, consisted of seven high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) machines, seven dissolution testers, and a backup power generator. Honored guests from the Government of Kenya included the Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Medical Services, Ms Mary Ngari, representing the Minister for Medical Services and the Chief Pharmacist, Dr. Kipkerich Kosgei. NQCL was represented by its board of management led by the Chairman, Dr. Rashid Aman, and the Director, Dr. Ali Arale. USAID was represented by Dr. James Batuka, Kenya Pharma’s COR. Nearly 100 guests from a wide variety of government and partner organizations attended the ceremony and ribbon cutting. The event was also covered by the government-owned Kenya Broadcasting Corporation.
In his speech, the Chairman of the NQCL Board of Management thanked USAID and Kenya Pharma for their support and continuing partnership, but also expressed concerns about NQCL’s staff levels and inability to hire permanent staff, lack of a sufficient and dedicated space, indeterminate legal status, and lack of consistent funding. The Permanent Secretary indicated that she was diligently pursuing answers to many of these issues.
With the new equipment in place, NQCL’s testing capacity has been doubled and their turnaround times for test results are expected to reduce accordingly. NQCL has been one of Kenya Pharma’s largest local QA partners for over two years and they have conducted tests on over 650 batches of product during that time. Kenya Pharma COP, Steve Hawkins, said “We greatly value this relationship and look forward to being able to continue working together in the future in continuing partnership with NQCL to ensure that quality assurance of health commodities in this country is optimized and sustained through strengthening of Government Institutions.”
This is a list of the speeches made at the celebration
Kenya Pharma Work Highlighted and Appreciated at the Annual PSK Conference
Kenya Pharma showcased some of its achievements at the Pharmaceutical Society of Kenya (PSK) Annual Conference. The conference, which took place from May 31st to June 1st 2012 in Mombasa, brought together more than 300 pharmacy professionals from all over the country as well as pharmaceutical distributors, wholesalers and other players in the industry. Kenya Pharma was represented at the event by the Quality Assurance Manager and the Forecasting & Quantification Specialist. The two Kenya Pharma staff each made a presentation highlighting the impact of the project’s work: one focused on the valuable contribution of Kenya Pharma’s field service representatives, while the other highlighted the project’s quality management system (QMS) launched in May of this year. The presentations were titled “Encouraging good storage practices in service delivery points,” and “Using QMS to improve the efficiency and sustainability of a pharmaceutical supply chain” respectively. Feedback from the audience indicated that pharmacists at health facilities served by Kenya Pharma appreciate the service the project provides. A pharmacist from a government hospital in Central region was concerned that the project’s operations would end in July and asked if Kenya Pharma had a transition plan. It was a relief to him to hear that the project had recently been notified by USAID that it would continue operation until 2014.
Kenya Pharma scoops award for achievement in promoting integrity
Kenya Pharma project has scooped one of the top awards in Chemonics contest for "Achievement in Promoting Integrity". Kenya Pharma was selected as the winner for the category "Promoting Our values" in which entries were judge on their demonstration of excellence in promoting honesty, integrity and upholding of Chemonics values and stands of business conduct in the course of development work.There were two categories of the award: (1) Promoting our values, and (2) Integrity success story.One winner was selected from each category and entries judged on how they demonstrate excellence in upholding Chemonics values and standards of business conduct in development work.
Announcing the news Anne O’Connor of the Chemonics Business Conduct Team noted that Kenya Pharma's entry had been selected as the winner of the award because of the project's impressive integration of "Living Our Values" in the new hire orientation process and in quarterly meetings. By having staff regularly discuss risk areas such as honest recordkeeping, avoiding conflicts of interest, integrity in providing references, and respecting tribal differences, the project has helped prevent problems, inspired positive behavior change and open communication, and improved productivity among staff.
This is excellent news for the Kenya Pharma team which has just completed another business ethics training session at a meeting less than week before the announcement."We at Kenya Pharma have been working hard and continually to ensure that our staff share these values and practices.It is wonderful that Chemonics' Senior Management has recognized our work with this important award. I am very proud of our staff and their diligent work in this area," says Kenya Pharma's chief of party, Steve Hawkins.