As stated by the governor, the law was passed in order to provide a solid legal foundation for the establishment of the Ekiti State Drugs and Health Commodities Management Agency (ESDHCMA).
While signing the bill into law as part of activities marking his third year in office in Ado Ekiti, the state capital, Fayemi stated that N80 million has been approved as seed funding for the newly established agency.
A strong legal foundation will be established for the manufacture, procurement, distribution, sales and management of drugs and medical commodities in the state, according to the governor’s submission.
“Medicines and medical supplies are critical components of our health-care system. Ensure that essential drugs and medical supplies are available in state-run health facilities.
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The provision of supplies that are readily available when needed is critical in ensuring that the people of Ekiti State have access to Universal Health Coverage.
In order for a drug and medical supply system to be successful, it must be supported by a strong regulatory system that is backed by law and that allows for high-quality manufacturing as well as the management of an efficient supply chain.
As a result, he stated, “The Drugs and Health Commodities Management Agency Act will address the menace of low-quality drugs in circulation and drug stockouts in the State, ensuring that high-quality drugs are constantly available in the State at very affordable prices.”
Moreover, the governor stated that the Act is critical to establishing Ekiti as a regional hub for high-quality healthcare delivery because, with it, the state would have the legal authority to enter into contract with large pharmaceutical companies in order to obtain the highest possible quality drugs at the most competitive prices.
As a result of this Act, we will be able to attract a more diverse set of private sector partners who will help us to catalyze the consumer market in our state, thereby further improving the health-seeking behavior of our citizens.”
As part of our efforts to increase our manufacturing capacity for the local production of drugs and other health commodities, we have established a “Drug and Health Commodities Revolving Fund.” It is expected that, following my assent to this Bill, all relevant stakeholders will act swiftly to ensure that the Drugs and Health Commodities Management Agency is established as soon as possible and that operations can begin in earnest,” he continued.
As Dr. Oyebanji Filani, the Commissioner for Health, pointed out, establishing the State Central Medical Store lacked the necessary resources and systems to ensure efficient drug supply chains and zero stock-outs.
There was no service level agreement in place with manufacturers or drug suppliers prior to now,” says the spokesperson. There was only sporadic enforcement of the drug management policy that was available. There was no streamlined framework in place for the purchase of drugs by health-care facilities and other service providers within the State.
Strengthened regulatory systems, quality manufacturing, and efficient supply chains are essential for ensuring the quality, safety, efficacy, and equitable accessibility of drugs and health commodities, according to Dr. Aziz.