(2013; 2 pages)
Theft, extortion, abuse... the US$ 6.5 trillion spent worldwide on health services each year is a powerful magnet for corruption. In fact experts estimate that 10 – 25% of global spending on public procurement of medicines is lost to corruption. Millions of people – in some of the poorest countries – are being robbed of their health as life-saving resources for essential medicines and for the recruitment of medical professionals are siphoned off.
In an attempt to curb this corruption and guided by WHO’s Medicines Strategy 2004-2007, WHO initiated the Good Governance for Medicines programme in 2004. The GGM programme was mandated by the third WHO Medicines Strategy 2008-2013 with the goal to contribute to health systems strengthening and prevent corruption by promoting good governance in the pharmaceutical sector.
The World Bank has identified corruption as the single greatest obstacle to economic and social development. The Good Governance for Medicines programme will build momentum to curb this abuse, as more and more public health colleagues in ministries of health and national medicines regulatory authorities rise to the challenge.