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County launches mobile app to manage medical supplies

The county government of Kisumu has rolled out an inventory management mobile application to enhance efficiency in supply and prescription of medicine in the area.

Chief Officer in charge of Health Services Dr. Gregory Ganda said the innovation targets to eliminate drug expiration losses occasioned by poor stock keeping.

All prescriptions, he said, shall be made through the platform dubbed Maisha Meds, to ensure proper records of all supplies across the 144 health facilities are kept.

Based on the data, he said facility managers will only stock what is enough to curb wastage and expiry.

“We have in the past witnessed very high expiration of drugs in Kisumu simply because facilities request for more than they require,” he said.

“A facility for example requests for 20, 000 tablets and ends up using only 1, 000 leaving the remaining 19, 000 to expire yet we have another facility within the county that could have utilized the drugs,” he added.

The platform which is a departure from the manual system where records were based on the number of patients treated, he said will trace all medicine procured by the county government to individuals to curb pilferage.

“For example when a patient is given say two tablets of a certain drug, the system automatically subtracts the same from the stock making it easy for us to know which medicine is required where,” he said.

Speaking during the Digital Health in Africa Conference at Mama Grace Onyango Social Center in Kisumu, Dr. Ganda said the system which is end to end was a game changer adding that it will enable the county government to look at the consumption rate of various drugs and plan effectively.

Digital technology in health management, he added, was the way to go adding that Kisumu has put in place a robust infrastructure to leverage on technology to enhance access to quality medical care.

He pointed out the partnership with global instant logistics leader, Zipline to supply drugs to health facilities in the area using drugs.

The initiative, he said, was set to lower the cost of transportation of drugs at the same time help reach far flung facilities in the event of emergencies.

All drugs that are not in use regularly, he said, shall be stored in a pool at the firm’s warehouse in Chemelil from where they shall be flown to a given facility whenever need arises.

“Drugs like anti-snake venom or anti-rabies venom which are not in use constantly will be stored in a pool and flown to a facility that is in need using drone technology,” he said.

This, he added, was another measure aimed at stopping wastage through expiration since most of the drugs expire at the facilities before they are used.

“Last year the county government procured anti-rabies venom worth Sh. 10 million but just about Sh. 4 million was used with the rest expiring before use,” he said.

By Chris Mahandara

 

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