Improving access to SMC medicine across the Sahel
Accurate estimation of the quantity of SP+AQ, currently the recommended SMC medicine, is one of the critical supply chain management functions needed to ensure that all eligible children receive this lifesaving treatment. Inaccurate estimation can lead to widespread shortages, surpluses and expiries, inequity, distortion of demand and irrational use – all of which can impede the cost-effective and successful implementation of an SMC campaign.
Under the lead of Management Sciences for Health, and as part of many supply chain optimization interventions planned through the ACCESS-SMC project, a workshop to validate estimated 2016 SP + AQ requirements was held in Accra, Ghana from December 8-10, 2015. The workshop was attended by representative pharmacists from country National Malaria Control Programs, Central Medical Stores and Departments of Pharmacy and their counterpart ACCESS-SMC country-level supply chain officers. This was the opportunity for countries to take part in capacity building sessions, sharing lessons learned and best practices. MSH supported country teams in estimating the number of doses required (quantification) for their 2016 campaign, including planning, forecasting and supply planning while also providing tips on how to build correct and robust assumptions.
By the end of the workshop, all seven ACCESS-SMC project countries, Burkina Faso, Chad, Guinea, Mali, Niger, Nigeria and the Gambia, had calculated their 2016 demand for SMC medicines through a systematic process and use of a simple excel tool. Two methods of quantification were practiced: the Consumption Method which calculated requirements using historical data on SP+AQ uptake in 2015 and the Morbidity Method which used the projected number of children expected to receive SP+AQ as preventive treatment in 2016. This work will help ACCESS-SMC supported countries to achieve the desired 2016 SMC coverage targets and associated expected outcomes.