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EACC part team formed to review drugs pricing

By Cyrus Ombati | Published Tue, March 21st 2017 at 00:00, Updated March 20th 2017 at 21:38 GMT +3
EACC chair Rev. Eliud Wabukala

A team of experts has been formed to review the systems, policies, procedures and practices in the pricing of pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical supplies.

This came after it emerged that pricing of pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical supplies in the health sector is critical in determining the overall success of the sector.

Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission CEO Halakhe Waqo yesterday said the process was also crucial in ensuring that the Government got value for money and safeguarded public resources.

"In essence, it impacts the affordability of medical supplies. Any element of overpricing could determine in real time the accessibility of these supplies by all Kenyans," Mr Waqo said.

Waqo said reports coming to the commission indicated that certain pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical supplies were procured at very high costs, translating to high costs for the consumers.

He cited a research conducted in 2016 by the Society for International Development (SID), Transparency International-Kenya and the Kenya Ethical and Legal Issues Network, which indicated that the Market Price Index was not informed by fair market prices.

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The CEO said this was because the listed prices were considerably higher than standard rates offered by the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority, Mission for Essential Drugs and Supplies and Management Sciences for Health.

"A research by the commission also lists health among the services most prone to corruption in the counties," he added.

Commission chairman Eliud Webukala said the high cost of medical supplies exposed the whole population to huge cost burdens that blocked access to healthcare.

"The importance of undertaking this review cannot be over-emphasised," he said.

Health Cabinet Secretary Cleopa Mailu was present during the launch of the review team at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development.