Did you know that UNDP’s country office in Ukraine was the first in Europe and Central Asia to establish a procurement health project?
In 2015, the Ministry of Health of Ukraine reached out to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Ukraine and other international partners (including UNICEF and Crown Agents), to request support with the procurement of medicines. According to the agreement signed between the Ministry and UNDP, Ukraine will procure medicines through international organizations, including UNDP, as an interim measure until 2020. In the meantime, the state-owned enterprise ‘Medical Procurement of Ukraine’, which will eventually become the central procurement agency, is developing its procurement capacity and will inherit best world practice from UNDP.
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What does the Project entail?
Procurement of vital medicines. In almost four years, UNDP Ukraine has managed to save more than UAH 1.7 billion (US$ 66 million) of state budget funds, and thus enable provision of additional medicines and medical products to cover the needs of patients. The high requirements and standards that UNDP establishes for the tender means the medicines procured are of exceptional quality and effectiveness, as unscrupulous producers cannot participate in the process.
Support and involvement of patients’ organizations. The community of patients is one of the driving forces behind the project, and simultaneously a beneficiary of changes in the health care system. The voice of patients should be heard in Ukraine: this is why, since 2017, UNDP has provided mini-grants to patients’ organizations to allow them to monitor the availability, monitoring and use of medicines procured. This means that patients can now directly participate in monitoring the procurement process and thus improve it. In 2016, UNDP, along with the patients’ community, has developed the “E-Liky” system, which enables patients to check the availability of medicines in 23 oblasts of Ukraine. UNDP has been working with patients’ community and civil society help build a system of ‘checks and balances’ that will ensure public control over the agency’s future activities.
Strengthening the national health procurement system. Since UNDP’s ultimate goal is to enable the Government to procure medicines and medical supplies itself within the health care system, one of the Project’s priorities is to create a central procurement agency and establish a modern health supply system. Towards this end, UNDP is:
- Promoting a sustainable approach to procurement;
- Supporting the development of approaches and a legal framework;
- Supporting measures to enhance capacity and advocacy;
- Analysing corruption and preparing an action plan to combat it;
- Supporting the unit in the Ministry; and
- Supporting a review of the nomenclature of medicines procured for the Ministry.
It is also expected that in 2019 UNDP in Ukraine, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, will develop a digital stock management system for medicines and medical products. This system will help improve the national procurement process and allow the process to be forecast and planned at national and local levels.
Sharing experience and best practices. Ukraine’s successful experience of procuring medicines through international organizations has been emulated by other states in the region, mainly countries that already have centralized medicines procurement systems. In 2017 and 2018, contracts were signed with UNDP for the procurement of medicines by Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
Increasing the share of suppliers. Transparency was one of the main challenges in the healthcare system, given that by 2015 about 95 per cent of tender winners were distributors, leading to monopolization of relevant processes. Today, 80 per cent of medicines and medical products are procured directly through manufacturers.
Signing of long-terms agreements. Since 2017, UNDP in Ukraine has started signing of long-term agreements. By establishing sustainable co-operation with manufacturers, this international practice can reduce the prices of contracts and ensure reliable supply of medicines.
Frequently Asked Questions
General Terms and Conditions
Medicines and medical products procured by UNDP
Procured under the budget of 2017 (last updated April 1, 2019)
Procured under the budget of 2018 (last updated April 1, 2019)
Cost-efficiency analysis of 2015 procurement
List of Long-Term Agreements for procurement of medicines (last updated August 13, 2018)
UNDP Value Proposition in Health Procurement
Sector Integrity Vulnerability Assessment - Health Product Procurement (SIVA)
Anti-corruption in health product procurement (SIVA)
Procurement Reform in Healthcare sector of Ukraine
Procurement - achievements, plans, approach