Good day Neil
Thank you for the update on this critical meeting.
I was following the proceedings and trying to relate it to the work I am doing in Zimbabwe - managing Pharmacy Services at District level and at Primary healthcare centres.
In my opinion, information is critical on NCDs across the whole continuum of care and to all stakeholders. In my setting, acute and other communicable conditions seem to be the main focus.
We avail medicines to manage NCDs at Primary care levels but cadres at that level may not be capacitated enough to manage these conditions and at times the regulatory framework restricts the scope of practise.
Development of practical guidelines and continuously educating those involved in delivery of primary care services may assist in better management of NCDs.
Also, the data collection tools used do contain parametres to capture NCDs but it seems they are inadequately utilised - possibly due to lack of knowledge. For example, there is a comprehensive data tool that captures most mental health issues but mostly zeros are recorded. Ultimately, we fail to map the extent of the NCD problem. This may lead to coming up with inadequate policies.
Another concern of mine is the failure to integrate NCD management between the public and private sector. If we are to attain UHC, practical models need to be available and implemented so that imformation on NCDs management is gathered from both sectors to inform policy.
For NCD management to receive adequate attention,there needs to be committment at all levels and from all stakeholders involved in health. And committment can only come if all are adequately informed on the extent of the NCD problem and the impact it has. All arms of the health care system need to be well informed and activated.
HIFA profile: Venus Mushininga is a pharmacist with the Ministry of Health and Childcare in Zimbabwe. She is a founder and President of the Zimbabwe Society of Oncology Pharmacy and the Zimbabewan delegate to the European Society of Oncology Pharmacy.
Professional interests: Oncology, Dissemination of information through to Health
Professionals and the public, Research. She is co-coordinator of the HIFA working group on information for Prescribers and Users of Medicines.
Email: vmushininga AT gmail.com