The Medicines Transparency Alliance. Programmatic Review of MeTA Phase II. Final Report – March 2016
(2016; 75 pages)


Improving access to medicines is a recognised global development priority. The recently agreed United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals include the intent to provide access to affordable medicines and vaccines to all by 2030 (Target 3b). It is also one of the key elements of the goal of Universal Health Coverage adopted by the UN in 2012.

According to WHO more than two billion people lack reliable access to essential medicines in the developing world. Average availability of medicines in public sector facilities in developing countries is just 34%. People are frequently driven to the private sector where availability is higher at 63.2% but prices are often unaffordable.

Moreover, up to 50% of available medicines may be inappropriately dispensed and may also be of poor quality, expired, damaged or fake.

Inefficient public and private markets and poorly functioning supply chains restrict the access of the poor to affordable, quality and appropriate medicines. Lack of information and information asymmetries (e.g. between manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers and consumers) fuel inefficiencies, distort competition, allow corrupt practice, hinder effective management and encourage irrational use of medicines.

This is the report of a review of the Medicines Transparency Alliance (MeTA) Programme, Phase II. It has been commissioned by the WHO Department of Essential Medicines and Health Products (EMP).

The Principal Purposes of the Review are:

  1. to provide WHO/EMP with in-depth information with regard to the achievements and challenges of MeTA Phase II
  2. to inform WHO strategy for future work in transparency and good governance in the pharmaceutical sector in countries
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