The Private Commercial Sector Distribution Chain for Antimalarial Drugs in Nigeria. Findings from a Rapid Survey, November 2009
(2009; 31 pages)

Abstract

In November of 2008, the Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria announced that it would administer the first phase of an ambitious scheme to increase the availability of effective treatment for malaria, the Affordable Medicines Facility-malaria (AMFm). Artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs) are highly effective, but remain prohibitively expensive for those who are most vulnerable to malaria infection.1 The AMFm aims to significantly reduce the price of ACTs by offering a co-payment for ACTs purchased by eligible buyers at the top of the supply chain.

Recognizing that the public and private sectors are important sources of antimalarials in most endemic countries, both public and private sector buyers will be entitled to purchase subsidised ACTs. The involvement of the private sector is an innovative element of AMFm, as many countries already have experience distributing ACTs in the public sector. To ensure that subsidised ACTs reach patients at the lowest possible cost, it is necessary to gain a better understanding of the private sector supply chains for antimalarials in each country participating in the AMFm.

The objective of the rapid supply chain survey was therefore to assist Nigeria, which is one of the 11 countries invited to apply to the first phase of the AMFm, in the development of an effective implementation plan by providing an understanding of the current supply chain for antimalarials, and the way in which subsidised ACTs are likely to travel through this chain to reach patients. This report presents the findings of a series of semi-structured interviews conducted with government officials and private suppliers of malaria treatment operating at the various levels of the chain. Supplemental sections include brief discussions on the Nigerian drug monitoring system, on the proposed tax exemption for subsidised ACTs under the AMFm, and also on the private sector capacity to repackage and re-label imported subsidised ACTs. In addition, data from the December 2008 report on the first round of the ACTwatch Outlet Survey in Nigeria were used to estimate key variables, such as antimalarial market shares...

 
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