Guyana Health System Assessment 2010. Health Systems 20/20 and the Guyana Ministry of Health. October 2011
(2011; 153 pages)


This study was funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by the Health Systems 20/20 project, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health in Guyana.

As the global community continues to scale up HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis (TB), malaria, and other priority health interventions, it is vital to understand the state of the health systems in which these services are being delivered. Good health systems should deliver effective, safe, quality health services to those in need with as much efficiency as possible within local country settings.

Strengthening Guyana‘s health system requires an understanding of its unique strengths and weaknesses. This Health Systems Assessment (HSA), conducted in 2010, provides a comprehensive assessment of key system functions organized around six technical modules, aligned with the World Health Organization‘s health system building blocks: governance, health financing, service delivery, human resources for health (HRH), pharmaceutical management, and health information systems (HIS). Its findings will provide policymakers and program managers with information on how to strengthen the health system.


The capacity of the government of Guyana to procure, store, manage, and distribute medicines and medical supplies has expanded greatly through collaboration with international partners. Procurement, storage, and distribution of medicines and commodities purchased with grants from the Global Fund have provided the impetus to strengthen and develop mechanisms that are in line with international practices and Global Fund requirements. Building on the progress made within specific disease programs (HIV, TB, and malaria), the USAID-funded Supply Chain Management System project has been providing support for the MOH Materials Management Unit. Tracking and recording are computerized at the central level. Procedures and policies are evolving; for example, there are newly developed patient care protocols, and the Essential Drugs List is under revision. Ongoing efforts to strengthen the management of medicines and medical products focus on streamlining established processes and extending their reach to the more remote regions and communities throughout the country.

Despite these improvements, challenges at all levels of the health system remain. Continuing to improve the monitoring of drugs, facilities, and dispensaries through increased financial support and enforcement mandates are key to this strategy. Improving these systems at regional storage facilities would ensure quality assurance of goods and efficient delivery to health units. Additionally, donors play a key role in pharmaceutical management and their efforts could be better coordinated. Developing the capacity within the MOH to oversee and coordinate donor efforts would strengthen overall pharmaceutical systems. Finally, the national Logistics Management Information System (LMIS) in Guyana needs strengthening through improved requisitions, communications, and resource management.

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