The fight to end the flow of counterfeit drugs into Uganda is set to see a new tool in use with Ugandan President Yoweri Musevini looking to blockchain as a potential solution. The intent is to leverage the transparency of decentralized ledger technology to considerably limit opportunities for messing with supply data.
Uganda’s president Yoweri Museveni has pledged his support for a blockchain company, MediConnect which will help in the country’s war against counterfeit drugs. Museveni said that his government will tackle the spread of counterfeits drugs in Uganda using blockchain. MediConnect traces drugs from manufacturers via pharmacies and patients. The platform will help the Ugandan authorities tackle the counterfeits prevalence.
Museveni met the MediConnect bosses at the Ugandan capital, Kampala to discuss the benefits of using the distributed ledger technology-blockchain that offers transparency for transactions within the chain. In an effort to combat the challenge of fake medicine finding its way in the clinics and pharmacies from the black market, the president vowed to support the company.
According to the Ugandan National Drug Authority (“NDA”), 10% of the drugs prescribed in the country have substandard or counterfeit copies of them sold on the market. Research from the World Health Organization (“WHO”) found that 1 in 10 medical products in developing countries is substandard or falsified, 42% of which are from the WHO African Region. The WHO has urged governments to take action to protect vulnerable communities most affected by the practice.
On the matter of the sellers themselves, it was pointed out that even they may not be aware of the true nature of the products they are selling. Using blockchain, this issue could be resolved since the supply data itself would be difficult to alter.