Better Health in Bangladesh
With support from the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), MSH is supporting the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOHFW) to strengthen priority health system areas through the Better Health in Bangladesh (BHB) project. Our support includes managing the process for contracting out and monitoring technical assistance, providing direct technical assistance in the accreditation of pharmacies and drug shops, and developing and rolling out an electronic asset management system.
Working with the Directorate General of Drug Administration, BHB helped develop and implement an accreditation model for both pharmacies and medicine shops, which led to the development of the country’s first national standards for retail drug outlets and an accreditation implementation strategy. These national standards cover the physical premises, personnel, training, counseling, storage, and record keeping. Drug outlets that meet these criteria are accredited as Model Pharmacies or Model Medicine Shops, which provide improved access to affordable, quality pharmaceutical products and services. BHB is implementing this standard for retail drug outlets in 11 districts of the country and is working with the directorate to revitalize its strategy and the tools used to strengthen inspection and monitoring of Model Pharmacies and Model Medicine Shops.
A major challenge for the MOHFW is tracking the medical and nonmedical equipment procured for use in health facilities. At the request of the ministry, the World Bank, and other development partners, MSH helped develop an electronic asset management system, initially with USAID support. It helps track new equipment from registration to decommissioning. The user-friendly dashboard provides ministry decision makers and other stakeholders with access to information such as number of assets, needed maintenance, and depreciation. Under BHB, MSH is helping to scale up the system in district and sub-district hospitals.