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DA: Statement by Patricia Kopane, Democratic Alliance Shadow Minister of Health, on how the party would end the shortage of medicine (30/05/2012)

30th May 2012

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The Democratic Alliance (DA) is calling for the supply of medicines to clinics and hospitals in the Eastern Cape and Limpopo to be centralized and professionalized.

DA activists in Polokwane and Bisho are dedicating the protests today toward resolving the medicine shortage crisis in these provinces.

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A central medicine supply unit is the only way to stop the critical shortages of basic and life-saving medicine for people relying on public healthcare.

Where the DA governs, we have set up a professional Chronic Dispensing Unit (CDU) that pre-packages and delivers prescription medicine.

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For the first time in South African public healthcare, medicine will be delivered directly to people’s homes, places of work and healthcare facilities across an entire province.

The CDU concept not only ensures that people get the medicine they need, but delivers directly to patients resulting in reduced queues at healthcare facilities. This provides an improved patient-centred experience for people relying on public healthcare.

We have already been running the CDU successfully in the Cape metro region and have budgeted to expand its services to the rest of the province this year.

In both the Eastern Cape and Limpopo, poor planning has led to tons of medication being destroyed while people go without basic life-saving drugs in clinics.

Limpopo recently tried to sell off tons off expiring medicine and the Eastern Cape was forced to destroy tons of old stock. This oversupply of the wrong drugs was taking place even while basic medicine like insulin is not available in clinics and hospitals.

Our call to these provincial governments today is: centralize and professionalize medicine supply to stop the medicine shortage crisis causing so much suffering for thousands of people.
 

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