Essential drugs in primary health centres of north central Nigeria; where is Bamako initiative?
To assess the availability of essential drugs and the perceptions of clients on drugs situation in the primary health centres of Tafa Local Government Area, north central Nigeria. Checklist consisting ofminimum drugs expected in a generic primary health centre developed by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) was adopted and used to assess drugs availability, while FocusGroupDiscussionswere conducted to determine the perceptions of clients on drugs situation in the health centres. Results showthat, all the 3 primary health centres in Tafa LGAdo not implement Bamako initiative (BI) and none was operating Drug Revolving Fund (DRF) system. Out of the minimum recommended score of 54 points for the availability and adequacy of drugs and consumables, NewWuse primary health centre in the LGA headquarters scored highest points of 19,while New Bwari and Iku primary health centres scored 13 points each.All these are far below the minimum requirement. Similarly, the results of the FGDs confirmed poor vailability of drugs and clients dissatisfactionswith the drugs situation in the primary health centres. This study has revealed that despite Bamako Initiatives put in place in late 80s essentials drugs are stillmirages inmany of the primary health care facilities in the study area. It is therefore recommended that, any effort aimed at reforming or repositioning primary health care must take into account resuscitating Bamako Initiative by ensuring functional DRF systemin all the primary care facilities.
Keywords: Essential drugs;Primary Health Centres; Bamako Initiative
Nigerian Journal of Clinical Practice Vol. 11 (1) 2008: pp.9-13