World health organization

10 facts on essential medicines

A health worker distributing medication to a patient, Kenya
WHO/M. Grant

Fact 1

The availability of medicines in developing countries is undermined by several factors: poor medicine supply and distribution systems; insufficient health facilities and staff; and low investment in health and the high cost of medicines.

The Essential Medicines List can help countries rationalize the purchasing and distribution of medicines, thereby reducing costs to the health system.

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