The Director General, National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) Prof. Mohammed Sambo, made this known in Abuja while addressing newsmen in collaboration with NAFDAC.
Sambo said that the authority has engaged several stakeholders including pharmaceutical manufacturers and companies to achieve its rebranding agenda with the aim of proffering solutions that
ensure eradication of out-of-stock syndrome.
“I inaugurated the NHIA Medicines Supply Committee on 19 Feb., 2020.
“The committee submitted its report in June 2020 and adopted branding of NHIA medicines and other health products to ensure the quality of its medicines,” Sambo said.
He said that the branding medicines and other health products was aimed to facilitate the supply of affordable, acceptable, accessible, available, and quality medicines and other health products.
According to him, the initiative is to enhance the production of high-quality medicines to inspire users’ confidence.
He said that he also inaugurated Medicines Supply Implementation Committee to pilot the affair with relevant stakeholders.
Sambo said that 12 pharmaceutical companies were selected and would be branding 33 products for the health insurance ecosystem in the first phase.
According to him, the authority choose seven states which are Delta, Enugu, Gombe, Jigawa, Niger, Osun and Sokoto states) and the FCT for the pilot phase of implementation of this initiative.
“This initiative is geared towards the strengthening of local pharmaceutical manufacturers, which will ultimately guarantee medicine security.
“It will help to reduce the cost of medicines especially that of intravenous fluids which will reduce by as much as 50 per cent of current market price based on NHIA negotiations with the manufacturers without compromising standards and quality.
“We kindly request NAFDAC to give the pharmaceutical companies branding products for the health insurance ecosystem a waiver to add the logo to their drug packs.
” This request is to avoid the transfer of the extra cost to the end user. Approve the collaborative post market surveillance by NHIA and NAFDAC,” he said.
Also speaking, Director General of NAFDAC, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, said that the collaboration between the two agencies was mandated to regulate and control the importation, exportation, manufacture and advertisement
She said others are distribution, sale, and use of food, drugs, cosmetics, medical devices, packaged water, detergents and chemicals.
Adeyeye said that government has just launched the operational guidelines for the 2022 National Health Insurance Authority Act as part of efforts to ensure all Nigerians have access to affordable healthcare services.
“The operational guidelines are crucial to clarifying the roles, responsibilities, and obligations of various stakeholders in the health sector because access to affordable quality health care for all Nigerians is key on the path to achieving Universal Health Coverage,” she said.
The director-general said the agency has collaborated with NHIA to ensure a sustainable access to affordable and acceptable quality medicines for our citizensThe Executive Order 3 (EO3) on support for local content in public procurement by the government.
She said that government required that the 33 drugs would be branded with NHIA inscription under the authority.
Adeyeye said that NAFDAC, through the Directorate of Registration and Regulatory Affairs would also ensure that appropriate and adequate labelling of the medicines are met in line with the Agency’s labelling requirements and in accordance with NHIA guidelines.
“NAFDAC will continue to collaborate with NHIA to ensure that the terms spelt out in Executive Order 3(EO3) will to be implemented to enable the attainment of Universal Health Coverage as specified in the National Drug Policy,” she said.