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NMS struggles to supply drugs amidst inadequate funding

National medical stores struggling with inadequate funds

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The National Medical Stores – NMS is struggling to deliver the required amount of drugs due to inadequate funds.

Speaking on Wednesday during the on-site monitoring of the new NMS warehouse, the NMS Chief Executive Officer Moses Kamabare said that the government allocates a third of the total budget of drugs needed, which is inadequate.

He says that the government allocates 300 Billion Shillings instead of the required 1 trillion shillings to deliver all essential drugs in health facilities.

Kamabare says that lack of funds has on several occasions led to the shortfalls in the amount of drugs that are supplied to the different health facilities across the country.

He says that due to shortage of funds, NMS is forced to rely on support from the donors provide 70% of the drugs required across the country.

Several Health units including Kalangala Health Center IV and Entebbe grade B hospital have on several occasions experienced drug shortages despite the excessive demand from the community.

Ministry of Health Spokesperson Emmanuel Ainebyoona says that well as NMS receives limited funding from government for drug purchase, NMS has no right to determine the kind of drugs to buy unless it has a database of drugs needed at the different health facilities across the country.

Construction of the NMS warehouse cost 69 billion shillings and is expected to be completed in December 2019.

Upon completion, Kamabare says that the warehouse will have a storage space of 30,000 pallets, which is more than double the capacity of the Entebbe warehouse, which is 12,980 pallets.

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