Public-private engagement to expand markets for health products

Engaging both private and public sector actors is a key aspect of India’s journey to self-reliance. In September, SHOPS Plus held a webinar to showcase how the team in India had fostered relationships between the two sectors. These relationships between the government and the private sector helped create shared ownership, collective impact, and sustained health outcomes. In India, public-private engagement has been critical in shaping and expanding the market for priority family planning, child health and TB products. The webinar featured two examples of public-private partnerships, the Defeat Diarrhea campaign and the tuberculosis e-pharmacy pilot.

“[SHOPS Plus] aligns priorities to build a common objective between the public and private sector.”

- Komal Khanna, SHOPS Plus Chief of Party, Abt Associates

Leveraging private resources to align with government campaign to grow ORS/zinc market

Child receiving oral rehydration remedy
Child receiving oral rehydration remedy

The Defeat Diarrhea campaign partnered India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare with a major manufacturer of oral rehydration salts, Dr. Reddy’s. With the help of SHOPS Plus, and other neutral brokers to facilitate the partnership, the government successfully rolled out the campaign and tapped Dr. Reddy’s network to reach an even broader audience. Speaking on this campaign, Dr. Ajay Khera, former commissioner of India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, said, “We should not be seen as in competition, and we must see public-private partnerships as a complementary to achieve our larger public health goals.” Having the Ministry and Dr. Reddy’s work together helped amplify the government’s messaging around combined use of oral rehydration salts and zinc.

Partnering with the private sector to pilot e-pharmacy model that increases access to government and private

Delivering TB treatment
Delivering TB treatment

TB services The SHOPS Plus TB e-pharmacy pilot partnered the Madhya Pradesh state government with India’s largest online pharmaceutical company, Medlife. During the webinar, Dr. Sanjay Pandey, the chief officer for advocacy and partnerships at PSI India, emphasized the importance of patience for both the state government and Medlife throughout the process. Providing logistics and technical services through an online e-pharmacy platform, and ensuring the platform was tailored to fit the local context, resulted in unique challenges. Each group used lawyers to facilitate conversations, demonstrating how the project navigated the challenges to ultimately help build trust in the shared vision. This partnership has helped the Madhya Pradesh state government achieve their targets around TB testing and treatment, and has helped increase the reach of Medlife services.

“When we combine the technological and financial forces from the private sector with the experience and leadership that the public sector creates it brings exciting new solutions and approaches [that] are more sustainable than traditional development approaches…I think a program like USAID India’s SHOPS Plus is really adding great value.”

– Moni Sagar, Division Chief, Family Health Division, USAID India

The SHOPS Plus project in India has yielded important results. The public-private partnerships it forged have helped increase demand for oral contraceptive pills, zinc and ORS, ensured TB services for patients in the private sector especially during the COVID pandemic, and established strong relationships between the public and private sector for future collaborations. You can watch the full webinar and listen to the lively discussion here.

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Sustaining Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) Plus is a five-year cooperative agreement (AID-OAA-A-15-00067) funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). This website is made possible by the generous support of the American people through USAID. The information provided on this website is not official U.S. government information and does not represent the views or positions of USAID or the U.S. government.

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