A Malawian pharmaceutical response to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Baxter Kachingwe, Peter Kumpalume, Felix Khuluza, Kumbukani Nyirenda, Ernest Matambo, John Mponda, Nettie Dzabala, Francis Chiumia, Ibrahim Chikowe, Frider Chimimba, Nelson Nyoloka, Louisa Alfazema, Happy Nyirongo, Dallas Smith

Kamuzu University of Health Sciences’s Department of Pharmacy, Blantyre, Malawi

*Corresponding Author: Dallas Smith , Email; dallas.james.smith@gmail.com

The COVID-19 pandemic has elicited swift and innovative responses due to the severity of the outbreak. Higher education institutions worldwide with pharmacy programs have identified vital gaps in COVID-19 care and has undertaken proactive steps to aid in the fight against the coronavirus. In Malawi, the Kamuzu University of Health Science’s Department of Pharmacy initiated the production of a modified formulation of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) recommended hand sanitizer. This manufacturing venture involved mobilizing the pharmacy faculty, identifying gaps in supplies and equipment, and utilizing evidenced-based information to create a
high-quality sanitation product, which passed the requirements as tested by the Malawi Bureau of Standards. The department of pharmacy is expanding their distribution of the product to meet the needs of frontline healthcare workers and vulnerable populations.
With historical issues of accessing care in Malawi and with COVID-19’s spread among healthcare workers, this hand sanitizer venture is vital in the public healthcare’s system response. The department of pharmacy will continue to lead the pharmacy profession in Malawi to provide targeted interventions in this unprecedented time.

Key Words: COVID-19, Malawi, Hand Sanitizer, Pharmaceutical Services, Pharmaceutical Preparations, Capacity Building, Academia

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