Stakeholder perspectives on the demand and supply factors driving substandard and falsified blood pressure lowering medications in Nigeria: A qualitative study

Grace Shedul, Olutobi Adekunle Sanuade, Eugenia N. Ugwuneji, Tunde M. Ojo, Aishwarya Vijay, Patrick Ponzing, Inuwa Okpe, Gabriel Lamkur Shedul, Mark D. Huffman, Dike Ojji, Lisa R. Hirschhorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives Although substandard and falsified (SF) blood pressure (BP) lowering medications are a global problem, qualitative research exploring factors driving this in Nigeria has not been reported. This study provides information on factors driving demand for and supply of low-quality BP lowering medications in Nigeria and potential strategies to address these factors. Methods This was a cross-sectional qualitative study. Between August 2020 and September 2020, we conducted 11 in-depth interviews and 7 focus group discussions with administrators of health facilities, major manufacturers and distributors of BP lowering medications, pharmacists, drug regulators, patients and primary care physicians purposively sampled from the Federal Capital Territory, Nigeria. Data were analysed using directed content analysis, with the aid of Dedoose. Results We found that demand for SF BP lowering medications in Nigeria was driven by high out-of-pocket expenditure and stockouts of quality-assured BP lowering medications. Supply of low-quality BP lowering medications was driven by limited in-country manufacturing capacity, non-adherence to good manufacturing and distribution practices, under-resourced drug regulatory systems, ineffective healthcare facility operations, poor distribution practices, limited number of trained pharmacists and the COVID-19 pandemic which led to stockouts. Central medicine store procurement procedures, active pharmaceutical ingredient quality check and availability of trained pharmacists were existing strategies perceived to lower the risk of supply and demand of SF BP lowering medications. Conclusion Our findings suggest that demand for and supply of SF BP lowering medications in Nigeria are driven by multi-level, interrelated factors. Multi-pronged strategies need to target stakeholders and systems involved in drug production, distribution, prescription, consumption, regulation and pricing.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere063433
JournalBMJ Open
Volume12
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 22 2022

Keywords

  • Hypertension
  • Public health
  • QUALITATIVE RESEARCH

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