The Ministry of Health, together with its partners like the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), has launched a partnership with Safe Boda under the ‘Safe Health Campaign’ to enable consumers access health products from various pharmacies around Kampala through online purchases as availed on the safe boda app.
Under the Safe Campaign Initiative, consumers will be able to order a range of health products online which will be delivered with the help of safe boda operators.
The campaign was launched at the Safe Boda offices in Kyebando Kampala on Wednesday
Dr Fred Sebisubi, the Assistant Commissioner for Pharmacy at the Ministry of Health said that tight controls will be put in place to protect consumers and product handling, adding that the online purchasing arrangement will improve access to health care, bridging the gap between pharmacies, drug outlets and consumers.
“This online business will bridge the gap between pharmacies and clients, and increase accessibility of health products. It will enable the Ministry to increase access to the health commodities across the country,” he said.
Sebisubi noted that the covid-19 pandemic has given rise to other ways of accessing healthcare commodities, prompting initiatives like the Safe Health Campaign.
“This time round, especially during covid-19, business cannot remain as usual where people move to health facilities, pharmacies, drug outlets to pick their commodities. So, I think covid-19 has shown us that it is possible to have other initiatives and access the products that we need,” he explained.
He further noted that online businesses are some of the fastest growing sectors with online health being a lucrative niche in Uganda and across the African continent.
“Globally, online health and wellness business contributes a tune of about 4.2 trillion US Dollars, which is of course a very big chuck. In Uganda, regarding the landscape of health products online, business is still new and not well developed but people have not come to appreciate it,” Sebisubi said.
“The concept, however, is not well understood by the vast majority of the community,” he added.
He noted that there is need to engage key stake holders like the National Drug Authority which is responsible for safety of medicines and health products, and the Ministry of Health for development of a regulatory framework among others.