Within one month of Haiti's devastating earthquake in 2010, SCMS distributed more than 100,000 pounds of medicines and emergency medical supplies from warehouse stock to over 40 health facilities.
In the eatchquake aftermath, SCMS also supplied close to 50,000 pounds of essential products including oral rehydration salts, antibiotics, lab supplies, water treatment and ringer lactate to support Haiti's response to the cholera epidemic.
Along with supplying health facilities with emergency provisions, SCMS prevented interruption in the supply chain for antiretrovirals (ARVs) throughout the earthquake aftermath. Just seven days following the initial devastating earthquake, we made our first of many replenishments of ARVs for a health facility outside of Port-au-Prince, garnering the momentum to carry on with its regular distribution soon after.
We have since resumed normal operations throughout Haiti. Despite the setbacks the country has endured, SCMS Haiti continues to thrive. Staff dedication has translated into an uninterrupted supply of essential commodities to sites that provide care to HIV/AIDS-infected individuals.
- Provide HIV/AIDS drugs and other life-saving commodities to over 130 treatment sites.
- Manage the full supply chain cycle, including using a coordinated procurement mechanism, preparing regular national quantifications and supply plans, and developing management support for better coordination.
- Manage an efficient central warehouse with trained and capable staff, and implement a warehouse management software system to manage commodities.
- Achieve the two ambitious goals of 100 percent on-time delivery and continuous treatment for patients (no stockouts).
- Assist in creating a sustainable logistics management system
Activities and Impact
Capacity building: As the number of patients being treated increases in Haiti, so does the need to treat opportunistic infections with an increased volume and range of drugs. To meet the challenge of managing this inventory, SCMS has developed a cadre of master trainers to instruct pharmacists, site managers and drug dispensers working at treatment centers on the techniques of logistics and stock management of HIV drugs and lab commodities. These master trainers are currently conducting regular workshops and training 20 to 40 participants quarterly at as many sites.
SCMS also conducted a training session on basic logistics adapted to the needs of the blood safety program with the Red Cross. Over time, these capacity-building efforts will contribute to sustained improvements in managing and distributing vital medicines and supplies on the front lines of HIV/AIDS patient care.
Warehousing: SCMS is the main procurement entity for laboratory supplies and OI/ARV drugs in Haiti. We are responsibile for 85 percent of lab supplies, 70 percent of OI drugs and 6 percent of ARVs in fullfilling national needs for HIV patients. To provide more storage space to accommodate this procurement, we established a 1,400-square-meter warehouse strategically located in Port-au-Prince. The warehouse uses MACS as an automated warehouse management information system tool to leverage hand-held and RF technology. The warehouse also includes a 25-square-meter cold room to maintain a constant temperature for storing cold chain items.
Distribution: The SCMS distribution network, which started with 12 sites in 2006, now includes more than 150 sites across the country. Some of these sites are located in areas that are extremely difficult to access. SCMS is also providing technical assistance on-site to logistics-related health workers. We participated in finalizing the memorandum of understanding between the Ministry of Health and the Clinton Foundation to provide free 2nd-line ARVs to Haiti, and are responsible for storing and distributing those medicines to treatment sites. We also manage and distribute a number of donation programs with national coverage such as the PMTCT Determine tests, the PMTCT drugs, early infant diagnosis and laboratory commodities, and pediatric ARVs and OI drugs.
Forecasting: SCMS has added a nutrition-treatment component to our work which includes procuring, storing and distributing ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF). To date, we have procured $131,000 in RUTF from NutriSet and VitaSet.