PRESS RELEASE

Health Ministry Pharmaceuticals Supply Chain Reform Project to improve access to medicines

22 October, 2020 Suva. The Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) through the Fiji Pharmaceuticals and Biomedical Services, today launched the Fiji Pharmaceuticals Supply Chain Reform project, in partnership with the Australian Government.

The project aims to improve the efficiency of supply chain management and procurement systems in order to increase availability, access and timely distribution of medicines and consumables to health facilities across Fiji.

Annually, the Government of Fiji spends around FJD50 million on medicines and consumables. Despite an overall adequate budget, chronic shortages and out of stocks of essential medicines are reported.

“Through this reform project, the Fiji Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Services will be able to make 30-40% savings through better contract management, more efficient tendering and improved logistics management,” Health Minister Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete said.

“The issue isn’t that we aren’t procuring enough medicines for the country, it’s the processes in which it is procured, distributed and monitored that we will improve, to ensure that all Fijians have access to medicines through their hospitals and health centres.

We are grateful to the Australian Government for partnering with us to bring much needed efficiencies to our pharmaceutical supply chain,” Dr Waqainabete added.

The project will be managed by Beyond Essential Systems of Australia, a company with extensive experience in supply chain reform and management in the Pacific region.

“The Australian Government is pleased to support the Ministry of Health and Medical Services in this mammoth project. Through this partnership, Beyond Essential Systems will introduce innovative supply mapping technology that will streamline the medical supply chain and bring about equitable access to vital medicines for Fijians,” Australia’s Deputy High Commissioner to Fiji, John Feakes said.

 

“Our Government is proud to continue to support the Fiji Government’s vision for a healthy population through projects such as this that will ensure that Fijians have access to the right medicines, of the right quality and quantity and at the right time,” Mr Feakes added.