FDA trains pharmacists, healthcare providers on pharmacovigilance

The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), has stressed the need for health facilities to report Adverse Drug Reaction (ADR) experienced by their patients to ensure patient safety.

Mr John Odai-Tettey, Central Regional Manager of the FDA, said it was a professional responsibility for healthcare providers to report ADR and ensure that patients also do same.

Addressing healthcare providers, pharmacist and officials of the FDA at an Institutional Contact Persons (ICPs) training workshop in Cape Coast, he said reporting outcomes of ADR would help the FDA detect fake products on the markets.

It would also protect patients from unnecessary harm and build public confidence in the healthcare delivery system of the country.

He said the inability of healthcare professionals and patients to report outcomes of ADR experienced was an affront to FDA’s efforts to ensure consumer safety.

The training, sponsored by the United Kingdom’s (UK) Department for International Development, was to introduce participants to pharmacovigilance and patient safety available tools, information and skills to ensure smooth reportage on ADR.

Mr Odai-Tettey explained that the objective of the training was to improve early identification of medicine safety issues through increased reporting by Institutional Contact Persons (ICPs) to champion and coordinate pharmacovigilance in their facilities.

The training formed part of FDA’s collaborative efforts to effectively engage with health care professionals and patients to report on all suspected cases of adverse drug reactions.

According to him, medicine safety should be of significant importance to prescribers as well as dispensers to prevent patients from suffering a secondary ailment as a result of the medicine they prescribed.

Mr Jesus Christ Otchere, Regional Regulatory Officer of the FDA, indicated that an effective parmacovigilance system would help in gathering enough data on products registered and how they fared on the market.

He said it would also help detect products that were fake or substandard and others that did not meet the specifications by which they were given market authorisation.

As part of efforts to improve pharmacovigilance in the country, pharmacovigilance courses had been introduced into the curricular of medical, pharmacy and nursing training institutions.

The idea, Mr Okyere said was to produce healthcare professionals with relevant knowledge on safety and effective monitoring of medicines to promote patient safety.

The FDA has developed an online database known as the “SafeWatch System” to facilitate the smooth submission of ADR reports by the institutional contact persons at the various health facilities.

Source: GNA

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