Separate prescription and dispensing services under the NHIS - Prof Sarpong
7/11/2012 12:01:52 AM -
Kumasi, July 10, GNA - The National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) has been urged to end the practice under the health insurance scheme (NHIS), drugs are prescribed and dispensed at the same facility.
Emeritus Professor Kwame Sarpong, former Dean of the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), said that was inconsistent with international best practices.
The two must be separated, he said, saying this was the most efficient means to reduce irrational use of medicines, save the scheme from paying unnecessary bills and enhance sustainability of the NHIS.
Prof Sarpong, addressing a day's stakeholders' meeting in Kumasi, noted that there was the tendency for prescribers with financial interest in the drugs dispensed at their facilities to prescribe more and expensive ones than those who have no such monetary gains to make.
The meeting provided the forum to challenges facing community pharmacy practice under the NHIS.
Jointly sponsored by the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana (PSGh) and Business Sector Advocacy Challenge (BUSAC) Fund, it brought together participants from the northern sector of the country.
Prof Sarpong said the community pharmacy practice offered a unique opportunity to address the healthcare needs of the people and therefore must be supported to play their expected role in healthcare delivery.
Mr James Ohemeng Kyei, President of the PSGh, urged private pharmacy practitioners not to leave their facilities under the care of unqualified personnel because that could compromise efficient pharmaceutical care.