Pharmacy Management in Humanitarian Context


  • Dates:  The course is currently not available for new enrolments. The trainer is on maternity leave. Thanks for your understanding.

  • Format:     Blended

  • Teacher(s):   Lucia Roussier

2010 - present

2010 - present

      Course Overview


The course Pharmacy Management in Humanitarian Context addresses the essentials of the management of medical supplies, such as drugs, and medical and laboratory equipment in humanitarian projects. The course focuses on key principles to ensure the medical supplies are effectively managed both quality- and quantity-wise. This includes every stage of a supply cycle from obtaining the medical products and their storage to handling and distribution. In addition, the accompanying issues, such as staff management and training, end-user support and management of donations are discussed.

      Course Objectives


Upon completion of the course the students will:

- Understand the essentials of pharmacy management in humanitarian projects, including specifics determined by the context and ways to respond to the challenges;
- Learn to effectively manage pharmacy activities at every stage of supply chain, from setting up the pharmacy, to storage, handling and distribution of the medical items;
- Learn to apply key pharmacy management tools;
- Acquire skills to prioritise and standardise the actions;
- Learn to use guidelines, checklists, templates and other tools supporting effective management of pharmacy;
- Learn about crucial issues necessary to ensure quality service and factors affecting quality (such as storage, transportation and handling conditions, proper application of management tools, donation appraisal, and other issues specific to the context);
- Understand specifics of human resources management in humanitarian context (staff qualification, social security system issues, fluctuation and recruitment) and learn how to address them;
- Recognise warning signs of pharmacy management problems and learn how to prevent them (theft, donations, overstock, pre-rupture, poor internal and inter-organisational communication).

      Course Content


Module 1. Pharmacy store and stock management.

Module 2. Principles of reception, preparation and distribution of medical supplies.

Module 3. Management of department pharmacies.

Module 4. Stock review. Handling issues.

Module 5. Acquisition of medical products.

      Course Methodology


This online self-paced course comprises of reading materials, video-lectures and exercises to ensure practicality of the knowledge acquired.  The lecture is followed by short quizzes, which test the understanding of the learned material. Situational analyses throughout the course are used to ensure the hands-on approach and development of practical skills. Students are given handy guidelines, tips and templates to be used in practice.

      Target Audience


Humanitarian response such as:

- Store managers;

- Nurses;

- Medical logisticians or pharmacists;

- Management of NGOs;

- Founders of humanitarian organisations/charity projects.


Lucia Roussier: 

She is a skilled pharmacist and a humanitarian worker who has gained a broad range of experience in different settings. Between 2005 and 2014, Lucia was engaged in a variety of roles: HQ support with Partners in Health (USA), Humanitarian Mission Pharmacist with Médecins Sans Frontières (South Sudan, Tunisia, Libya & Haiti) and Community Pharmacist (Slovakia).
Lucia obtained her Masters degree in Pharmacy from Comenius University, Slovakia, in 2006. Currently, she continues her studies towards a Master in Public Health qualification with specialization in disaster management and public health challenges in low-income countries.



Upon successful completion of the course, the student will receive a certificate with a unique ID number. The certificate can then be verified by an employer by email enquiry on TRAASS’s website.


Time required for completion solely depends on the student. However, we recommend allocating at least 4-5 hours for every module.


Basic knowledge of MS Excel or other spreadsheet programs.

Experience in the field of humanitarian emergencies as well as pharmacy management is an advantage but not a pre-requisite to the course.


The course materials and video lectures are in English.



Reading and studying materials are provided. Students are encouraged to use the forum or chat to share knowledge and ideas. Also, students can contact the course coordinator via e-mail or post their questions on the forum. The course coordinator will reply to any queries within a reasonable time.