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E-DRUG: Computerised EDP system

Dear E-druggers,

recently there were some questions re essential drug inventory
management software. Although Navision is a commercial 
software, I thought it relevant for ess drug programmes to have
at least a summary of the product. I invited therefore the author
of Navision to submit a short description.
Other software producers (INVEC, SWEDIS, Gemedic etc) and users
are cordially invited to summarize their products and experiences.

Wilbert Bannenberg, E-drug moderator


Review on Essential Drugs Software Implementation

Below please find my experiences during the implementation of an
administrative software package in Essential Drugs programmes in Uganda
(NMS in Entebbe) and in Ethiopia (ERCS in Addis Ababa).

Navision is a client/server based software package that includes a standard
financial and management system for normal business. This includes Finance,
Customer, Supplier, Inventory systems with order and invoice handling.
The E-drug version (Navision EDP) that DataPro developed contain very
strict inventory handling including batchnumber and location control. The
system data is always online and updated.
It also includes features to count the inventory using the location system.
This means that stocktakes can be prepared, implemented and reconciliated
within a very short time (normally in a couple of days).
Also included is a financial system that contains features to post in three
different currencies and exchanging the financial data with other
locations. This means that donors can request financial data in any of
these three currencies either as a printed statement or as a datafile for

The NMS in Entebbe, Uganda was the first place to receive the Navision EDP
software package. During the first period of time the system was only
implemented as a financial system for the project account, but later on the
full inventory and order system was implemented.
Later on the Ethiopian Red Cross (ERCS) in Addis Ababa received the same
Navision EDP package for their Pharmacy Project.

One of the most important elements in the implementation is the training of
the staff. Without training the staff can not utilise Navision EDP and the
manual system is used instead.

It is also very important that the manual system should be stopped very
soon after the implementation of Navision EDP in order for the staff to be
forced to use the computerised system. If the manual system is run in
parallel with the computer system, it is my experience that the computer
system never is fully up-to-date at any time.

The Navision EDP system requires a computer network to run (at least in a
multi-user environment). This means that it is a very good idea to utilise
the network for other groupware purposes than Navision EDP. This could
include File- and printersharing, Officepackages, Mail, Internet, etc.
Both in Uganda and in Ethiopia the Navision EDP is run along with other
groupware programmes on a computernetwork.
Carsten Howitz is the director of DataPro A/S, Denmark which is a
consultancy business with specialties in advising and implementing
Navision, PC-Networks, Lotus Notes, Officepackages, Internet etc.
Carsten Howitz has been working with E-drug software development and
implementation in Africa for almost 4 years.

To get a full description of the Navision EDP software package, please
refer to DataPro's website on www.datapro.dk/welcome.htm or contact Carsten
Howitz (howitz@datapro.dk) for further information.

Best regards
Carsten Howitz
email: howitz@datapro.dk

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