Pharmacists worried over fake drugs affair

The Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana (PSGH) has expressed surprise over the large quantities of alleged fake medicines brought into the country.

The PSGH said it was surprised at how the alleged counterfeit medicines were cleared from the ports of entry without the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) clearance certification documents signed by an accredited official of the Authority.

It also questioned whether the importers’ application for registration of the alleged fake pharmaceutical products were accompanied by quality assurance certificates issued by competent medicine regulatory authorities of the exporting countries as required by law.

Pharmacist James Ohemeng Kyei, President of PSGH, who expressed surprise in a statement copied to the Ghana News Agency, on Wednesday, said the Society’s attempt to engage the FDA on the questions raised had failed.

The statement said: “What is happening between the FDA and the importers of the alleged fake medicines smacks of a systematic regulatory failure and lack of technical assessment and inputs into regulatory decision-making.

“Government needs to urgently investigate this and those found culpable punished.”

The statement said the PSGH would not renege in its responsibility of ensuring that the Ghanaian public had access to professional pharmaceutical care and services as well as quality medicines.

“The PSGH therefore endorses the full application of the law on any person or company proven to have indeed imported or manufactured fake, substandard or counterfeit medicines illegally into the Ghanaian market,” the statement said.

It said the Society also strongly condemns unproven and unsubstantiated alerts and allegations on medicines by the FDA or any agency as such alarmist information creates unnecessary panic among all stakeholders in the medicine industry affecting patients and the general populace.

The statement said that such alarms further undermined the integrity and efforts of some pharmaceutical companies.

The PSGH appealed to the Minister of Health to intervene to have a full risk assessment of the current situation in order to find out what had gone wrong with the regulatory system, culminating in the leakage of large qualities of alleged fake and unregistered medicines into the country.

Source: GNA

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