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Uganda districts directed to purchase 70% of drugs from NMS

The Uganda Parliamentary Committee on Social Services has directed all Uganda districts to purchase at least 70% of their drugs from the government controlled National Medical Stores (NMS) as opposed to buying them from private drug companies.

Mulago Hospital building

Mulago Hospital building

The Member of Parliament for Bunya West, also a member of the committee Aggrey Henry Bagiire told journalists at Uganda Parliament today (29th June 2010) that the policy has been to purchase at least 30% of the drugs from NMS by Uganda district governments.

Bagiire says the policy will help reduce the expiry of government drugs and increase availability of drugs in government hospitals and health centers.

In 2009 Uganda National Referral Hospital of Mulago faced an acute shortage of drugs yet there were drugs in NMS that could have been procured for the hospital. He says that if the new policy was in place, the hospital would not have had the drug shortage.

The Bunya West MP says that during the 2009/10 Uganda National budget, out of the 11 billion Uganda Shillings meant for drugs in Mulago Hospital, only 2 billion shillings was spent buying drugs from NMS.

Uganda continues to face shortage of drugs in various government owned hospitals and health centers partly due to corruption.

Zacharia Tiberindwa, Ultimate Media

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