Pooled Procurement of Medicines by Church Pharmaceutical Supply Agencies. Meeting Report, Dar es Salaam Tanzania, 12–13 October 2010
(2010; 16 pages)

Abstract

The expected gains from this kind of joint purchasing (pooled procurement of medicines) included:

  • Reduced cost through increased economies of scale
  • Stronger negotiating and purchasing power
  • Pooling of resources and expertise – financial, technical and human, therefore minimizing costs
  • Standardized mechanisms, a more cost efficient and transparent system for purchasing
  • Harmonization of Medicines Quality Assurance processes leading to better guarantees on Quality of products
  • Maintenance of a pool of reliable suppliers and a continuous supply chain On the other hand the challenges which often hamper the development and maintenance of pooled procurement systems included:
  • Lack of political will and agreement on technical areas such as medicines regulation, financial matters and on the model that the group should use
  • Complete transparency and achievement of the best prices may not always be guaranteed in any chosen model or system set up
  • Intellectual Property related issues may hinder collaboration - across countries because of the different levels of compliance to the TRIPS agreement for countries even those in the same regional bloc.
  • Inadequate financing within the group and different mechanisms for disbursement as well as differences in the procurement laws and issues related to currency convertibility within member states of the group.
  • Harmonization of key areas is often a big challenge. Differences may exist in which products are on the National Essential Medicines List, registration policies for products, how suppliers are pre-qualified and which quality assurance mechanisms are in place.
 
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