ACCESS Bank Zambia Managing Director Lishala C. Situmbeko has called for strengthened collaboration between government and the corporate sector in the health sector to address challenges of essential medicines supply chain in the country.
Mr. Situmbeko said while the responsibility of spearheading healthcare services rests upon government through the Ministry of Health (MOH), collaboration is a powerful tool for economic achievement and attainment of Universal Health Coverage.
He said this on Saturday, 2nd December during the Pharmaceuticals Society of Zambia (PSZ) Annual Gala Dinner held under the theme ‘Healthcare and Corporate Collaboration for a Healthy and Prosperous Zambia.’
“I am also truly excited about the opportunities for collaboration that exist between the Access Bank and the pharmaceutical industry, all in the pursuit of a healthier and more prosperous Zambia.
“As we reflect on the achievements and challenges in pharmaceutical care throughout the year, this period has been characterised by significant milestones and turning points. From these experiences, we have gained lessons and wisdom that illuminate the path towards Health and Wellbeing, aligning with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” Mr. Situmbeko said.
He said the undeniable link between health and economic expansion cannot be understated because health stands as a key determinant of productivity and return on labour input.
The Managing Director said one of the pivotal components in healthcare and Universal Health Coverage is ensuring a consistent supply of quality essential medicines. He commended PSZ for their active engagement and partnership in the medicines supply chain and delivery of pharmaceuticals.
“We have seen reports of challenges in the essential medicines supply chain. I believe that current efforts to address this have begun to unlock the supply chain and I urge all players to apply themselves collaboratively and proactively for us to continue to improve delivery of pharmaceutical care,” Mr. Situmbeko said.
He further commended Government for the continued recruitment of health professionals countrywide because this will provide an improved outlook for the health sector, further adding that the launch of the Zambia Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Initiative (ZPMI) in October last year set the stage for strategic partnerships, an opportunity that Access Bank is set to explore.
“We understand the unique challenges and opportunities within the pharmaceutical industry and are committed to developing tailored financial solutions to support the growth and sustainability of your businesses.
“For working capital solutions, capital financing, import financing facilities, Access Bank is your home. We look forward to partnering with the key players in the medicines supply chain to ensure that we collaborate in building healthy pharmaceutical businesses for the betterment of our society.
And PSZ vice-president Mr. Samuel Muyunda thanked Access Bank for the collaboration with PSZ, adding that the Association looks forward to an enhanced partnership with the financial institution.