Essential Medicines

Country Situational Analyses of Medicines Management in Health Care Delivery

The regional strategy to promote rational use of medicines (RUM), updated at the regional meeting of July 2010, recommended undertaking a situational analysis of medicines in health care delivery in order to plan for a more coordinated integrated approach to improving the use of medicines. Following this meeting, the Regional Committee adopted Resolution SEA/RC64/R5, National essential drug policy including the rational use of medicines, which recommended undertaking a situational analysis to aid planning. Missions to all eleven member countries were therefore undertaken for this purpose. Following these missions, a regional consultation on Effective Management of Medicines was held in April 2013 during which the situational analysis approach was endorsed by countries. In September 2013 the Regional Committee adopted Resolution SEA/RC66/R7 on Effective Management of Medicines which recommends that Member States undertake a situational analysis of medicines in health care delivery 4-yearly and requested WHO to conduct a regional consultation every 4 years to review progress. Member States also requested that WHO develop a tool for countries to use during the situational analysis and that country reports be shared.
The country situational analyses of medicines in healthcare delivery involve data collection on medicines use (including antibiotics), medicines availability and implementation of policies and regulations, by a multi-disciplinary government team over a 2-week period, using a pre-designed tool, and ending with a national workshop to plan future action. Such information is often unavailable elsewhere and is very useful to understand the real situation, identify priority problems and find feasible, pragmatic and acceptable solutions to often complex problems. The data also allows monitoring of progress and provides institutional memory.
The workbook tool is newly developed but available on the web for all countries to use. We welcome all suggestions for improvement, which may be sent to Dr Kathleen A Holloway, Regional Adviser for Essential Drugs and Other Medicines, email:

Country Situational Analysis Workbook tool

Country Situational Analysis National Workshop Presentation Template

Reports of Country Situational Analysis of South-East Asia Countries