Drug shortages blamed on new inter-based system
AFTER reports of shortages of essential medicines in clinics in Limpopo, Health MEC Phophi Ramathuba has blamed the new system being implemented by the National Treasury and national Department of Health to improve efficiency as the cause of the shortages.
The new system, introduced in July, is internet-based and makes the process of capturing medicines slow, resulting in drugs not reaching the clinics.
During a recent visit to the provincial pharmaceutical depot, Ramathuba criticised the new system.
“The issues of budgets have been resolved; we have stocks but the new system makes it a serious challenge to get the medicine from here (the depot) to the clinics.
“This is a disaster and all our pharmacists will camp here this week to make sure that our clinics receive their medicines,” said Ramathuba.
Clinics in Vhembe have experienced shortages for months, resulting in patients being sent home without treatment.
Ramathuba lamented that the system is simply not working and they will have to engage the national department because they cannot
gamble with the lives of patients by using a system that doesn’t work.
“We cannot be used as guinea pigs to test a system that has not been proven to work. We cannot be experimenting while people suffer without medicines.
“Elderly people are waiting in their clinics and we cannot delay them.”
Thabiso Teffo, the MEC’s spokesperson, said that since July there has been an increase in reports of clinics experiencing shortages of medicines in the province. ONE in five South African children under 5 suffer from stunting, according to the recent SA Demographic and Health Survey.
It found that stunted children suffer delayed growth and their brains don’t develop as they should.
So the Grow Great Campaign was officially launched this month to fight stunting. This multi-funder drive aims to confront the hidden challenge of chronic under-nutrition and will mobilise the nation to achieve zero-stunting by 2030.
Given her commitment to maternal and child health and her advocacy for early childhood development, the campaign’s First Lady, Dr Tshepo Motsepe, in her keynote address at SOUTH African billionaire businessman Patrice Motsepe has come to the defence of African governments, saying they were not being given enough credit for creating an environment conducive for foreign investment on the continent.
Motsepe was speaking at the Africa Investment Summit in Sandton, Johannesburg, yesterday, which drew heads of governments from across the continent and captains of industry from across the globe.
The summit, which ends today, sought to best position the continent as a key destination for investment, especially in the fourth industrial revolution.