Hindrances of Accreditation of Eligible Drug Shops in Mtwara District, Tanzania
Tanzania as one of the developing countries, the drug shops plays a key role in the promotion of primary health care by ensuring the availability and accessibility of quality and affordable medicine. However, the trend of misconducts from these shops has increased such as operating without being accredited or registered, lack of qualified personnel for selling or dispensing medicines. Thus, the study explored the hindrances of accreditation of drug shops in Mtwara District. This qualitative study applied descriptive cross-sectional design. The study used purposive and convenient samplings to obtain 35 participants. An in-depth interview was used to collect data, where by an in-depth interview data collection guides for Ward Executive Officers (WEOs), members of Council Food and Drug Committee (CFDC) and ward drug inspectors were prepared and administered to 35 participants from Mtwara District. Content analysis was used to analyses the data with the help of ATLAS.ti software version 7. Regarding the procedural related hindrances for accreditation of drug shops, the study found that Councils do not follow the required procedures during accreditation in which there was little or no involvement of ward levels during accreditation of drug shops. Regarding the standards related hindrances; Majority of drug shops owners had not attended awareness course conducted by the Pharmacy Council and majority of drug shops had no qualified medicine dispensers. Regarding the Service providers related hindrances; the ward levels officers responsible for processing the accreditation of drug shops had limited knowledge on accreditation of drug shops compared to the one at the Council levels. Moreover, it was found that majority of the officers at ward level such as WEOs and drug inspectors were not oriented or trained on the accreditation of the drug shop and lastly One Council did not conduct CFDC meeting in last two years. Based on the above findings, the study recommends that; ward levels officers responsible for accreditation of drug shops should be oriented on accreditation of drug shops, Pharmacy Council and Councils should strengthen supervision and inspection of drug shops in order to ensure that the regulation and guidelines are followed during accreditation of drug shops.
Mohamed Ulombe, Lawrencia Mushi
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