Access to chronic disease medicines ‘still out of reach for many’: WHO report
Access to NCD medicines: emerging challenges during COVID-19 Pandemic and Key Structural Factors highlights the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on access to NCD medicines, and policies and strategies implemented by countries both anticipate and mitigate disruptions in medical supplies supply chains.
During a pandemic, people living with cancer, heart disease, chronic respiratory disease, diabetes and other NCDs, had difficulty accessing their regular medicines, WHO reminded. A new report examines the impact of the pandemic on NCD medicines, from production, procurement and import, to drug delivery, availability and affordability.
” The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the challenges people living with NCDs face in accessing essential medicines.,” said Dr Bente Mikkelsen, Director of the WHO Department of Noncommunicable Diseases.
“For many, treatment has been disrupted, which can lead to serious health consequences.. Therefore, it is very important not only that the treatment and care of people living with NCDs be included in national response and preparedness plans, but also that found innovative ways to implement these plans“.
The report also provides insights and data useful to key stakeholders in the NCD pharmaceutical supply chain, including governments, regulators, manufacturers and the private sector, as well as directions for future research to improve the resilience of the system that delivers lifesaving medicines for patients. World.
Eat there is an urgent need to increase transparency a common “ecology of pharmaceutical information,” the WHO report says, as a basis for planning and responding to a pandemic.
WHO added that if we can’t identify weaknesses in the global NCD supply chain, we won’t be able to fix them.
Without effective monitoring and transparent data, it is difficult to identify weaknesses in the global supply chain that makes national health systems responsible for checking their own supply chainsStrengthen and expand notification systems for drug shortages, ensure rule flexibility and minimize trade barriers.
Prepare for new pandemics
“Action is needed to increase the resilience of drug supply chains globally and in countries to meet today’s needs. and prepare for new challenges, including emergencies and pandemics,” said Dr. Clive Ondari, director of health products policy and standards.
Worldwide, more is spent on NCD medicines than any other type of medicine.
WHO stresses the need to continue to evaluate the successes and failures of the global supply chain for improving access to NCD medicines and services as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves.
A long-term strategy to strengthen access and delivery mechanisms during emergencies and mitigate future outbreaks should be developed, the report of the UN health agency stresses, with particular attention to ensuring the uninterrupted and sustainable supply of medicines and products necessary for the diagnosis and treatment of chronic diseases.
“Let’s not forget: COVID-19 may be out of the picture, but access to NCD medicines remains out of reach for many” said Dr. Mikkelsen.