Regional Supply Chain Symposium in Cartagena: Advancing Information Systems and Supply Chain Excellence

grupo de participantes del simposio regional de sistemas de informacion
  • Ecuador, Belize, Honduras, and Peru were part of the symposium to share best practices for the Region. 

  • Supply Chain Management and integrated health information have become significant and vital resources that need to be part of the countries’ priorities in improving access to health supplies.  

Within the scope of the collaboration with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria, the Strategic Fund of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) hosted the 2nd Regional Symposium on Integrated Information Systems - Management of Medicines and Health Technologies: A Comprehensive Vision. Building on the partnership with the Global Fund since 2015, this latest collaboration emphasized the establishment of a technical working group empowered with leadership in decision-making and strengthening the quantification of HIV, Tuberculosis, and Malaria needs in the defined countries. 

It opened with three main objectives, and pillars for the structure of the event that will lead to future engagements: building relationships, sharing best practices, and developing a transition plan for 2024. To begin, the Strategic Fund and the Global Fund provided a context of what has been done to promote best practices in the integration and sustainability strategies of national systems for the management of medicines and other health technologies among the participating countries. In addition, PAHO technical experts emphasized the latest WHO/PAHO recommendations and the progress made in the quest to eliminate HIV, tuberculosis and malaria. 

“It’s been a tremendous success as we successfully attained the three objectives that we established. We have seen the countries come together to share practices, success stories, strategies, and insights to collectively strengthen supply chain management capacities, through technical cooperation with the Strategic Fund”. Said Christopher Lim, Unit Chief of the Strategic Fund. 

Speakers from Colombia, Costa Rica, Argentina, and the Dominican Republic shared their experiences in the implementation of information systems for pharmaceutical and medical supply logistics, mainly in terms of governance, comprehensiveness, and sustainability; human resource capacity, trained and sufficient; quality management; and investment for efficiency and effectiveness. 

The event concluded with a resounding commitment from the participating countries to disseminate the information in order to enhance their processes and sustain the integration of innovative practices acquired from the event; with a patient-centered approach. This will allow the countries to focus on channeling their collective efforts, encompassing not only clinical and pharmaceutical aspects but also planning and logistics into the future. 

Lim also mentioned that "the time of discussion, of coming up with strategies, but not acting is over. We need to act, and the time is now. I’m glad that the team is fully committed to this endeavor”.  

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