KEMSA Unveils New Operational Strategy to Improve Organizational Productivity

The Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA) has unveiled a 180-day Rapid Results Operational Strategy to guide the second phase of its organizational transformation journey.

The strategy aptly titled the KEMSA 2.0 strategy will focus on creating momentum for organizational productivity; ensure efficient last mile delivery of health products across the country.

The launch of the KEMSA 2.0 strategy follows the recent adoption of a new organizational structure to ensure compliance with oversight requirements. As part of the adoption of the organizational structure – with eight operational directorates and a staffing ceiling of 378 – KEMSA on Monday launched a competitive recruitment process to fill senior positions in the new structure.

KEMSA Managing Director Terry Ramadhani said the new strategy was formulated to position the Authority as the supply chain solutions provider of choice for the local healthcare system.

The commissioning ceremony of KEMSA 2.0 service teams, with team building activities, was held at the Public Service Club with more than 150 KEMSA staff and operational partners, including the World Bank, the Chartered Institute of Supplies and Procurement Kenya (CIPS), the Global Fund-Local Fund Agent and officials of the Africa Resource Center (ARC). KEMSA 2.0 service teams will provide internal advocacy support to consolidate its service delivery pillars.

The KEMSA 2.0 strategy, Ramadhani explained, will be underpinned by three pillars focused on driving operational excellence, improving customer experience and repositioning the organization. She said the adoption of the new organizational structure and the deployment of the performance-driven strategy will provide the impetus needed to guide the Authority’s transformation into an effective Health Products and Technologies (HPT) organization.

Over the next 180 days, the KEMSA 2.0 strategy, she said, will be implemented on a solid foundation of deep stakeholder engagements to gain their trust. She added that strong corporate governance standards enhanced by the Board and management of the Authority have been formulated and will be executed to ensure end-to-end transparency, accountability and visibility of operations while along the supply chain.

Among other specific steps, the Authority, which recently announced the adoption of a new organizational structure, is focusing on the competitive recruitment, recruitment and onboarding of KEMSA 2.0 staff members by the end next month. In October, the Authority hopes to activate pilot testing of a new enterprise resource planning (ERP) system as it seeks to leverage information technology solutions to fuel the KEMSA 2.0 reform agenda .

“At KEMSA, we are once again dedicated to duty, and the KEMSA 2.0 strategy with measurable goals, will be anchored on three operational pillars, all focused on ensuring that medical needs are appropriately addressed. Ours is a duty to life or death because you can never postpone a medical need.KEMSA will remain at the heart of facilitating the provision of quality health care by frontline health workers through the provision of health products and technologies. December, KEMSA is optimistic about the possibility of regaining confidence and seeing the return of USAID, which has been a key operational and financial partner. “Before the end of the year, we are sparing no effort to regain the trust from a key partner such as USAID and ensure that we make KEMSA’s new National Supply Chain Center fully operational,” she said.

She added, “We have the goodwill of the government, the Kenyan people and implementing partners. Along with the KEMSA 2.0 strategy, ours is an ambitious yet specific and measurable strategy that will position KEMSA as a true public and commercial agency, well placed to provide last mile supply chain solutions for the local healthcare system,” said assured Ramadhani.

The launch of KEMSA 2.0 is the third phase of the reforms announced in November 2021. The first phase was the announcement of the reforms and the establishment of structures to institutionalize the priority reforms identified by the KEMSA Reform Implementation Committee (KRIC) and took place between February 2021 and January 2022.

The second phase was the operationalization of the KEMSA Business Reform Continuity Team to implement a 90-day work plan culminating in, among other things, the appointment of a KEMSA Managing Director to lead the reform.

Ongoing transformation efforts led by the new KEMSA Board, supported by the government through the Ministry of Health, are aimed at improving the governance, integrity and efficiency of the organization.

Over the years, several oversight bodies have cited the current organizational structure as an impediment to KEMSA’s service delivery capacity. In its current structure, KEMSA has not operated at the optimal levels required to support critical functions, including planning, quality management, partnerships, resource mobilization and compliance assurance mechanisms, which have greatly affected the efficiency and productivity of the Authority.

Aubrey L. Morgan