HSAP: Optimizing access to Sexual and Reproductive Health services through Transparency and Accountability

There is need to strengthen the capacity of the entire health system to answer public demands for health commodities in Uganda. This is the central message from the Medicines Transparency Alliance (MeTA), and the Health Systems Advocacy Partnership (HSAP).

The call was made at a meeting convened by HEPS –Uganda for MeTA member organizations to share research findings and formulating policy recommendations to the relevant authorities aimed at scaling up access to Sexual Reproductive health (SRH) Services and commodities.

The workshop was facilitated by Denis Kibira, the Executive Director, HEPS-Uganda and the coordinator MeTA , Dr. Fred Sebisubi, MeTA Co-Chair Representing government, Nazeem Mohamed-MeTA Co Chair Private sector Dr. Jotham Musiguzi, the Director General, National Population Council, Joseph Mwoga from World Health Organization ( WHO), Dr. Moses Muwengo, the Director Samasha , and the Pharmacovigilance Team from Makerere University among others.

During the workshop, several studies related to access to Sexual Reproductive services and commodities were presented and discussed. They in common reveal that the health system factors of inability of well-trained health workforce, lack of well managed commodity supply systems, and service delivery platforms and mechanisms, Little Pharmocovigilance awareness, detection and reporting of suspected ADRs at SRH clinics have greatly jeopardized citizenry access to SR commodities and services.

In addition, they indicated that availability of commodities especially in private facilities is disproportionately low, with Inadequacy in financing and associated mismatch between demand and supply. The participants also deliberated on the Health Systems Advocacy Partnership, SRH context for Uganda; Role of Medicines Transparency Alliance (MeTA), as well as went to formulate policy recommendations to the relevant authorities, which include intensified capacity for the system to answer public demand, advocacy and awareness raising for the public including policy makers at all levels, advocacy for the revised curriculum for health works to incorporate in SRH issues.

Meanwhile the Director General, National Population Council (NPC), who made the key note address highlighted Uganda’s journey to reap its Demographic Dividends. “ we need to focus on the population structure of this country rather than on the pollution numbers, if we are to maximally exploit the potential contained by the young generation of this country” Hope ,who represented the Director General NPC.

Pof. Francis Omaswa, from Achest, said that for Uganda to benefit from the Demographic Dividends, efforts are needed from all actors, the private sector, government, civil society organization, political leaders and the community to deliver on their responsibilities and political commitments. The meeting attracted both international and national stakeholders including government, non government organization, the academia, researches, and health practioners from different Districts of Uganda.

The meeting took place at Sheraton Kampala Hotel, on the 9th October 2017.