The Pharmaceutical Society of Kenya (PSK) has confirmed the commitment of local pharmacists to boost the national Universal Health Coverage (UHC) rollout plans.
Speaking at an event to mark the World Pharmacists Day in Kenya, PSK president, Louis Machogu, said local pharmacists are all set to support the national government efforts to facilitate an effective UHC scheme.
The government has committed to guarantee all Kenyans access to affordable health care through the universal health coverage pillar of the Big 4 Agenda. Kenyans living in the four counties under the UHC pilot programme are now able to access health services and essential medicines in primary care and secondary care hospitals.
Accompanied by, Mr George Onyango, local pharmacists, he said, will be at hand to provide efficient pharmaceutical supply and prescription management systems to complement clinical interventions at the county and national levels.
Quality healthcare systems, including access to pharmacists, he added, can help save up to 58% of deaths which are currently attributed to major drivers of excess mortality across conditions, from cardiovascular diseases and injuries to neonatal and communicable disorders.
“The role of a pharmacist as a statutory regulated professional in the health delivery ecosystem cannot be ignored as it provides the bridge for effective and quality based clinical outcomes through the dispensing of appropriate medicines,” he said.
While cautioning patients to avoid self-medication instances, which are negatively impacting the efficacy of pharmaceutical products, Machogu also petitioned the Government to prioritise access to affordable and quality assured pharmaceutical products as part of the national UHC rollout plans.
On his part, the GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals Kenya general manager Mr Onyango said: “GSK, believes that pharmacists form an integral part of the patient’s Circle of Trust. This circle of trust is made up of doctors, nurses, pharmacists, the pharmaceutical industry and other stakeholders who work together to make the patient feel better.”
He said that their mission at GSK is to help people do more, feel better and live longer. “Our values of being patient focussed are strongly aligned with the theme of the World Pharmacists Day,” he said.
Globally, the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) believes that structured collaborative action on UHC is needed to meet the shared goals of expanding patient access to medicines through innovative solutions, and achieving long-term sustainability of the health sector. This is all the more necessary given the complex mix of interconnected threats to global health, which we increasingly face —from poverty and pandemics to conflict and environmental issues.