Medical drug supply agency Kemsa revs up reform strategy

 Medical drug supply agency Kemsa revs up reform strategy

KEMSA CEO Terry Ramadhani.

The Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA) has unveiled a 180-day rapid results operating strategy to guide the second phase of its organisational transformation.

Aptly named KEMSA 2.0, the strategy, which is formulated to position the authority as the supply chain provider of choice for the local health system will focus on building momentum for organisational productivity to guarantee efficient last mile delivery of health commodities countrywide.

The launch of the KEMSA 2.0 strategy comes barely a week after the agency adopted a new organisational structure to ensure compliance with oversight requirements.

As part of the organisational structure that has eight operating directorates and a staff establishment ceiling of 378, KEMSA started competitive recruitment on Monday to fill leadership positions in the new structure.

KEMSA CEO Terry Ramadhani said the new strategy had been formulated to position the agency as the supply chain solutions provider of choice for the local health system.

Ms Ramadhani explained the strategy will be underpinned by three pillars focusing on driving operational excellence, enhancing customer experience and repositioning the organisation.

She added that adopting the new organisation structure and the roll-out of the performance-oriented strategy will provide the necessary impetus to guide transformation into an effective Health Products and Technologies (HPTs) organisation.

“KEMSA 2.0 strategy with measurable targets, will be anchored on three operating pillars, all geared at ensuring that medical needs are appropriately handled. Ours is a life and death duty as you can never postpone a medical need. KEMSA will remain at the heart of facilitating quality health provision by the front line health workers through the provision of Health Products and Technologies,” Ms Ramadhani noted.

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In the next 180 days, the KEMSA 2.0 strategy will be delivered on a solid foundation of extensive stakeholder engagements to win their trust.

She added that robust and enhanced corporate governance standards by the board and management have been formulated and will be executed to ensure operating transparency, accountability, and end-to-end visibility across the supply chain.

Further, the agency projects to recruit, fill and onboard KEMSA 2.0 staff members by the end of August.

The authority hopes to activate the pilot testing of a new enterprise resource planning (ERP) system in October as it seeks to leverage IT to power the KEMSA 2.0 reform agenda.

By December, KEMSA is optimistic about winning back the trust and seeing the return of USAID, which has been a key operating and funding partner.

“Before the end of the year, we are sparing no effort to win back the trust of a key partner such as USAID and ensure that we fully operationalise the new KEMSA National Supply Chain Centre,” Ms Ramadhani said.

“Ours is an ambitious yet specific and measurable strategy that will position KEMSA as a true public, commercial agency, well positioned to deliver last-mile supply chain solutions for the local health system,” she said.

The launch of KEMSA 2.0 is the third phase of the reforms announced in November 2021. The first phase was the announcement of the reforms and setting up structures to institutionalise priority reforms identified by the KEMSA Reforms Implementation Committee (KRIC) and ran between February 2021 and January 2022.

The second phase was the KEMSA Business Reforms Continuity Team rollout to implement a 90-day work plan culminating with, among others, the appointment of a substantive KEMSA CEO to spearhead the reforms.

The ongoing transformation efforts spearheaded by the new KEMSA board, backed by the government through the Ministry of Health, are geared at improving organisational governance, integrity, and efficiency.

Over the years, several oversight bodies have cited the current organisational structure as an impediment to KEMSA’s service delivery capacity.

As currently structured, KEMSA has not operated at the required optimum levels to support critical functions, including planning, quality management, partnerships, resource mobilisation and compliance assurance mechanisms which have heavily affected the Authority’s effectiveness and productivity.



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