Fiji Time: 3:56 AM on Tuesday 23 December

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Health saves $3m

Tevita Vuibau
Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Health Ministry has saved $3million this year — thanks to improved procurement, storage and distribution of drugs and medication.

Drugs held in stock at the Fiji Pharmaceutical Centre in 2008 were valued at as much as $10m but best practices by the health sector has reduced that to $6m.

"We have made dramatic improvements this year by reducing the expiry and wastage of medications and drugs around the country," Health Minister Doctor Neil Sharma said.

He also said the ministry had moved away from using originated drugs to generic drugs.

"The United States of America uses 40 per cent of its medication from India and these are good generics. The health ministry is determined in making sure that world class drugs and medicines are also accessible to all Fijians," Dr Sharma said.

He said while these cost-saving measures were successful because of new practices implemented — the purchasing of new technology had contributed to the ministry's health programs.

Dr Sharma said adopting new and improved processes and standards in health clinics around the country had improved the performance of personnel and the quality of services.

"For now, we are in the process of purchasing Computed Axial Tomography (CAT) scanners for the Central Division, liquid cytology equipment as well as efficient ways of screening cancer patients. For the ministry, purchasing these equipment means that Fijians don't have to travel outside the country to access world class health services and facilities," he said.





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