Going the Extra Mile for Health
Tuesday, July 8, 2014
In the distant corners of Africa, entrepreneurs deliver goods and services across bumpy roads, crossing brimming rivers and rickety bridges, climbing steep hills and descending treacherous valleys. It is a classic story of conquering odds to reach the unreached.
This story once inspired a potent question: If a company can deliver soft drinks to the most remote towns in Africa, why can’t essential medicines get there, too?
Five years ago, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria turned to the private sector for expertise and support to deliver essential medicines and medical products to far-flung locales. In 2010, The Coca-Cola Company took up the challenge, announcing a pilot project in Tanzania.
The public-private partnership that ensued transfers expertise in supply chain management from Coca-Cola to the public health sector in partnership with Tanzania’s Medical Stores Department (MSD), the Global Fund, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Accenture Development Partnerships. It brings drugs and essential medical supplies to the hardest to reach areas of the East African country.