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ZAMMSA Celebrates Year-End Achievements and Outlines Vision for 2024

In a year-end statement delivered on December 23rd, 2023, Victor Nyasulu, the Director General of the Zambia Medicines and Medical Supplies Agency (ZAMMSA), highlighted significant achievements, challenges, and the agency’s vision for the coming year.

Addressing ZAMMSA Management, Staff, and members of the press, Mr. Nyasulu expressed gratitude for the support received from the government of the Republic of Zambia (GRZ) and Cooperating Partners (CPs) in the purchase of Medicines and Medical Supplies (MMS). 

He emphasized the vital role of the press in a democratic jurisdiction, acknowledging its importance in the agency’s operations.

Mr. Nyasulu announced that under the leadership of President Hakainde Hichilema, the GRZ had increased funding towards the MMS healthcare subsector by over 300% in just two years. The MMS Fund now averages approximately USD 250 million, with additional support from CPs, marking a substantial commitment to public health.

The vision of ZAMMSA, he stated, is to be ‘A world-class supply chain of essential medicines and medical supplies for a healthy and productive nation.’

Reflecting on the challenges faced in securing adequate stock availability in previous years, Mr. Nyasulu noted that primary healthcare facilities are now reporting 80% stock availability, a significant improvement. 

ZAMMSA’s Stock Availability Status, which was around 40% mid-year, has increased to 60%, with efforts including collaborations with United Nations agencies and local initiatives contributing to the positive trajectory.

Mr. Nyasulu highlighted ZAMMSA’s commitment to procuring from local suppliers and manufacturers, supporting the local pharmaceutical industry. He emphasized a deliberate policy to prioritize local commodities and announced plans for reservation schemes for citizen bidders, particularly focusing on women, youths, and people with disabilities in 2024.

Quality and safety of health commodities were also addressed, with ZAMMSA intensifying visual inspection and testing in collaboration with regulatory authorities. Monitoring systems for storage conditions at ZAMMSA warehouses were cited as crucial, with high compliance levels recorded throughout the year.

On the corporate governance front, he outlined the implementation of the ZAMMSA Strategic Plan for 2022 to 2026 and the approval of the ZAMMSA Corporate Governance Framework. The ongoing restructuring and streamlining of ZAMMSA aim to enhance operational efficiency.

Mr. Nyasulu concluded by expressing gratitude to cooperating partners for their support and announced successful mobilization of funds for staff training in supply chain-related courses. 

He also highlighted support for distribution vehicles, emphasizing the agency’s commitment to timely delivery and distribution of medical commodities.

As 2023 comes to a close, ZAMMSA looks forward to more collaborations and partnerships in 2024, remaining committed to ensuring cost-effective and quality medicines and medical supplies for all Zambians. Mr. Nyasulu wished everyone a merry Christmas and a healthy 2024, filled with blessings.

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