| 20 May 2024, Monday |

Health Minister launches the pharmaceutical card

Caretaker Minister of Public Health Dr. Hamad Hassan signed a cooperation agreement with the Medical Value Chain Company (MVC), represented in Lebanon by Nidal Al-Hajj.

The agreement aims at providing the ministry with an advanced digital system that allows establishing a unified platform for managing and dispensing medicines and registering citizens to obtain a unified health number and a pharmaceutical card.

In this context, MVC will provide 6 million cards free of charge in the first phase of the project. Card holders will have access to subsidized medicines. This card will form the core for the development and implementation of the unified health card at a later time.

MVC is working in partnership with the world’s largest companies, such as Google, IBM and Amazon to develop this system. It has been implemented in more than 40 foreign and Arab countries. MVC will provide it to the Lebanese state for free without any cost despite the high cost of the project, which was previously estimated at millions of dollars.

This project comes as a continuation of the efforts made by the concerned departments in the Ministry for years, especially the Electronic Health Department and the Pharmacy Department and its affiliated departments, which led to the adoption of two-dimensional barcodes on all medicines. All drug warehouses and pharmacies were linked into a single online network through the MediTrack drug tracking software application.

This project comes to track and monitor medicines within the supply chain, starting from manufacturing in the country of origin, passing through the customs administration, then distribution to the patient.

This system allows people to register on the platform and obtain a unified health number, which allows prescriptions to be added to their medical file and consumed during their visits to pharmacies across Lebanon. Thus, pharmacies in Lebanon are able to know and use these prescriptions to meet citizen requests to ensure that no one in the logistics chain is storing subsidized medicines, or transporting them to foreign markets.

The main objectives of this project are:

1- Reducing the pharmaceutical bill

2- Providing the patient with safe medication

3- Preventing drug smuggling and counterfeiting

4- Ensuring access to the drug subsidized by the Central Bank

5- Preventing the storage of medicines by any party, including citizens

The project is divided into four phases. The first phase ends within three months, and includes collecting data on the health card in parallel with establishing the system and circulating it to the concerned authorities in this field.

  • Sawt Beirut International