On 30th November, 2011 HEPS-Uganda in collaboration with the National Forum of People Living with HIV/AIDS Networks in Uganda (NAFOPHANU) carried out a pill check on availability of essential medicines for HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria in 15 selected district hospitals in Uganda namely; Kalangala, Soroti, Kabale, Mukono, Mbarara, Masindi, Nakapiripirit, Iganga, Apac, Kabarole, Katakwi, Adjumani, Jinja, Kitgum, Arua. The survey was intended to highlight the situation of access as the world celebrates World AIDS Day. The theme for the World AIDS Day 2011 is “Getting to Zero”. As we join the rest of the world to celebrate the World AIDS Day question remains; Is Uganda getting to zero in terms of access to medicine?
The survey considered the preferred first line Anti retro viral treatment of Tenofovir/ Lamivudine + Nevirapine and Tenofovir/ Lamivudine + Efavirenz; alternative first line of Zidovudine/ Lamivudine + Nevirapine and Zidovudine/ Lamivudine + Efavirenz; the alternative first line for pregnant women of Tenofovir/ Lamivudine/ Atazanavir/ Ritonavir; Septrin for prophylaxis of opportunistic infections; anti-malarial (coartem) and a TB first Line Rifampicin/ Isoniazid/ Pyrazinamide/ Ethambutol.
The results show that majority of the districts did not have any stock-outs except of five (as indicated on the map - http://pillcheck.crowdmap.com). There was serious concern in Apac District which didn’t have any of the 5 Anti retro viral therapy regimens, Septrin, first line TB medicine and anti-malarials.
The results show that there is an improvement in the medicine supply chain but the scattered stock-outs may point to poor management at the health facility.