Liberia - Pharmaceuticals & Medical EquipmentLiberia - Pharmaceuticals
OverviewPresently, the country’s health care delivery system is weak and depends heavily on international donor support. There is minimal private sector involvement in this sector. As a result, most healthcare facilities are run by government, bilateral and multilateral donors, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), including faith-based organizations. The sector is also constrained by weak supply chain management (distribution, storage, supervisions, etc.) and limited human resources (doctors, midwifes, pharmacists, laboratory technicians, etc.). Furthermore, there are a multitude of challenges related to health infrastructure, health financing, health system management and governance, human and logistical resources, drugs and medical supplies, management and use of medicines, and health information systems. Over the years, the country has suffered from a critical shortage of qualified health workers, compounded by high attrition among the existing health workers. Health workers--especially in rural communities--often complain about low salaries, late or inadequate payments, and poor living accommodations. Generally, there is an inadequate availability of essential genuine medical equipment and pharmaceutical products in the country. In spite of these general weaknesses, there are multiple areas that need U.S. investments. For instance, limited capacity translates into ample investment opportunities such as provision of health facilities, medical logistics and equipment, training of laboratory technicians, midwifes, pharmacists, as well as provision of reliable medical supplies to community-based health centers.
The National Drug Service (NDS)--a state-owned pharmaceutical supply outlet--provides drugs for government-run health facilities. Even privately run health facilities are constrained by inadequate financial resources to procure quality medical equipment and pharmaceuticals overseas. The current health system is vulnerable to health emergencies or shocks. The 2014-2015 Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak exposed the structural weaknesses and fragility of the country’s health system. The Ministry of Health (MOH) works closely with other state-run regulatory bodies, such as the Liberia Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Authority (LMHRA) and the Pharmacy Board of Liberia, to register, monitor and regulate pharmacies and medicine stores. The MOH designs policies and regulations to address problems related to accessibility, affordability, availability, supply chain management, and rational use of medicines. There are a few genuine private medical and health services providers, such as Aspen Medical, providing a range of medical and emergency services.
Leading Sub-SectorsSub-sector best prospects for U.S. companies range from providing health infrastructure, health facilities, and medical education to offering health information systems.
OpportunitiesInvestment opportunities include health system strengthening through education, training, capacity building and skill development programs. There are immense opportunities in providing specialized equipment to healthcare providers targeting the expatriate community, including diagnostic and critical care equipment such as ultrasounds, ECG (electrocardiography), advanced life support equipment, and digital x-ray machines.
Liberia Biopharmaceuticals Medical Devices Trade Development and Promotion