The im­por­tance of elec­tronic pre­scrip­tions

Viet Nam News - - NA­TIONAL -

Health Min­is­ter Nguyeãn Thò Kim Tieán, speaks to Thôøi (Vieät Nam Eco­nomic Times) news­pa­per on the plan to in­tro­duce elec­tronic pre­scrip­tions

are elec­tronic pre­scrip tions bet­ter than writ­ten ones?

First of all I should say that the elec­tronic pre­scrip­tions are meant to re­duce the risks as­so­ci­ated with tra­di­tional meth­ods. It is also one of the ma­jor rea­sons for the push to­wards elec­tronic med­i­cal records.

In Vieät Nam, e-pre­scrip­tions have been ap­plied in all 63 prov­inces na­tion­wide, with tech­no­log­i­cal sup­port from mil­i­tary-run In­dus­try and Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tion Group Vi­et­tel, Viet­nam Post and Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tion Cor­po­ra­tion (VNPT), FPT and oth­ers. By now, some 15,178 phar­ma­cies, ac­count­ing for about 82.76 per cent of phar­ma­cies na­tion­wide, use the tech­nol­ogy.

We hope that by 2020 elec­tronic pre­scrip­tions will be used na­tion­wide to en­sure the con­nec­tion be­tween physi­cians, phar­ma­cists, nurses and pa­tients.

By shar­ing med­i­cal in­for­ma­tion, e-pre­scrip­tions seek to con­nect the pa­tient’s team of health­care providers to help de­ci­sion mak­ing.

Can you tell us a bit more about ne­go­ti­a­tions on drug prices with phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pa­nies in ac­cor­dance with the 2016 Law on Phar­macy?

The Min­istry of Health (MoH) has al­ready started its ne­go­ti­a­tions with phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pa­nies on the ba­sis of the Law on Bid­ding and De­cree No.63/CP on the ap­pli­ca­tion of the Bid­ding Law. In the mean­time, the MoH has al­ready is­sued Cir­cu­lar No.11 on how to con­duct a drug price ne­go­ti­a­tion.

Mean­while, the MoH has cre­ated a spe­cial ne­go­ti­a­tion coun­cil headed by an MoH deputy min­is­ter as its chair­man and a deputy di­rec­tor gen­eral of the Vieät Nam In­sur­ance Com­pany as its vice-chair­man. Mem­bers of the coun­cil in­clude rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Min­istry of Fi­nance, Vieät Nam So­cial Se­cu­rity and rep­re­sen­ta­tives from MoH de­part­ments and con­cerned agen­cies and phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal ex­perts.

A num­ber of ne­go­ti­a­tions have been con­ducted and pos­i­tive re­sults have been achieved. The most no­table suc­cess is that drug prices have been re­duced by 18.55 per cent com­pared with the drug price of­fered in the bid­ding doc­u­ments. More im­por­tantly, ev­ery­thing has been con­ducted in a trans­par­ent man­ner.

Re­gard­ing the MoH’s mis­sion in 2019, we will con­tinue to ne­go­ti­ate on the price of pro­pri­etary medicines to­wards the goal of cut­ting drug prices in line with the Gov­ern­ment’s pol­icy.

What achieve­ments were made in the process of drug pro­cure­ment in 2018?

In 2018, drug bid­ding brought about pos­i­tive re­sults for the pub­lic health sec­tor. For ex­am­ple, we or­gan­ised sev­eral bid­ding ses­sions for anti-retro­vi­ral drugs and saved a lot of money for our health in­sur­ance bud­get.

Lessons learned in 2018 will help us to cut the cost of HIV treat­ment.

At present the MoH has been con­duct­ing a study to re­port to the Prime Min­is­ter and the Na­tional As­sem­bly’s Stand­ing Com­mit­tee on a pi­lot pro­gramme on na­tional bid­bing for drugs and med­i­cal equip­ment and fa­cil­i­ties. Re­sults of the bid will then be used as a ref­er­ence for all units or health fa­cil­i­ties to re­fer to in their drug pro­cure­ment or med­i­cal fa­cil­i­ties. — VNS

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