PUBLIC PROCUREMENT OF DRUGS
The most important aspect of any drug is its quality that includes its effectiveness. Quality can be ensured through proper manufacturing and distribution processes. For instance, if the temperature of the drug during manufacturing or distribution has to be maintained at a certain level, any deviation would make it ineffective for treatment. Quality also includes the level and types of impurities in raw materials that are used to manufacture a drug. Low quality and cheaper alternatives are sometimes not only ineffective but might have harmful side effects due to such impurities.
The Province of Punjab has been issuing tenders that recognize that low cost should not be the sole criteria for selection of tenders. They have started to procured high quality drugs that are being distributed at free of cost to patients in Punjab. All the provinces across Pakistan should follow the Province of Punjab model for procurement of high quality medicines.
Pharmaceutical companies are applying for tenders on breakeven prices i.e. on no profit no loss basis, for certain drugs as to assist the government to achieve their healthcare objectives.