(1989; 1 page)
This article describes efforts by Central America and Panama to address the lack of health care in their nations, caused by the recent economic crisis of the region. The crisis has decreased resources for public health, and the need for intervention is increasing. The region, with assistance from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and WHO’s Regional Office for the Americas, developed the “Priority Health Needs in Central America and Panama” plan. The Plan’s major components are improving the supply and use of essential drugs, increasing the level of local production, creating a national pharmaceutical policy, and improving the infrastructure and poor training systems. The goal of the Plan is to ensure access to safe, quality essential drugs for the entire population, especially those in low-income groups. The Plan and its strategies received funding from US and European donor agency grants. After the first few years of the Plan, accomplishments have been made through the use of workshops, guidelines and manuals, reference books and the pool procurement of essential drugs.
Abstract written by M. Tobin, 2013.