NMS secures sh41b for completion of medicines warehouse

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Paul Okware, the chief stores and operation officer at NMS said, the sh41b required for the completion of the project has been secured with contributions from the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development, National Medical Stores and the Global Fund.

The National Medical Stores (NMS) has secured sh41b for the completion of a pharmaceutical warehouse at Kajjansi in Wakiso district.

The Government owned corporation mandated to procure, store and distribute essential medicines and health supplies is constructing a sh69b ultra-modern pharmaceutical warehouse to increase its storage capacity, however the project has been faced with a funding gap of approximately shs41bn.

The project is being funded by Global Fund and Uganda government to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.  Sitting on a 10-acre piece of land, the warehouse is being designed and constructed by COMPLANT in joint venture with Oubuntu architects and will be the biggest in the country.

Paul Okware, the chief stores and operation officer at NMS said, the sh41b required for the completion of the project has been secured with contributions from the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development, National Medical Stores and the Global Fund.

“Of the sh41b, the Global Fund has agreed to contribute $5.6m (approximately sh21b), while the government contribution shall be sh19.9b and this shall be sufficient to have our warehouse complete,” Okware said.

He made the remarks this week during a guided site tour by the board members of the Uganda Country Coordinating Mechanism (UCCM) of the Global Fund.

Upon completion, the warehouse will have a storage space of 30,000 pallets, which is more than double the capacity of the Entebbe warehouse, which is 12,980 pallets.

“With this facility, we will be able to procure medicines in sufficient quantities and store them for distribution in a timely manner. Currently, we are using Entebbe warehouse at almost 100% capacity and many of our suppliers including the Global Fund are holding stock for us before we get it, the long-term project goal for NMS is to have sufficient storage space for the current and future needs of the country and to ensure that we have commodity security for all essential medicines for the entire population,” Okware said.

The warehouse will have facilities like a vaccine workshop, quality control laboratory, offices for more than 200 staff, cold storage rooms, garage and 30,000 pallet locations of space among others.

 aul kware the  head of stores and operations explains to  board members as they toured the ajjansi medicine warehousePaul Okware, the NMS head of stores and operations explains to CCM board members as they toured the Kajjansi medicine warehouse

 
It will also have a 300kva solar power plant capable to providing 50% of the electricity needs by the warehouse complex.
 
“We are building a world-class warehouse that will make Ugandans proud and will remain an integral part of the medicines supply chain for generations to come,” Okware said.

Maggie Kigozi, the vice chairperson UCCM board commended NMS for the efforts made towards improving drug handling and distribution in the country.

“We are happy with the progress of the project which we hope will be complete by May next year. They have requested for more funding from Global Fund of $5.6m and we can see that they need it,” Kigozi says.

She explained that the increase in population has led to increased demand for medicines and thus the need for more storage space.

The UCCM team also toured Entebbe central warehouse where they appreciated the medicines distribution mechanisms.

The Uganda CCM is the board at country level that mobilises resources and oversees/monitors the implementation of the Global Fund supported programmes in Uganda to ensure that the approved funds are used for the intended purpose; and that the services and commodities are provided.

NewVision.co.ug

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