“I wouldn’t say they’ve stopped because once there is demand for it, the people arrested will still go back. I think public education is better because when people are more informed they will make wise decisions concerning their health needs,” the Head of Drug Enforcement Department of the FDA, Thomas Amedzro has said.
Reports indicate that the Ghanaian drug market is constantly flooded with expired, unregistered, substandard, fake drugs, cosmetics, medical equipment and household chemical substances.
Mr. Amedzro said, “because their medicines don’t go through the appropriate channels, they are downright fake and substandard and can afford to cut the certified premises by way of pricing. It is thus lucrative for them and cheap so to speak.”
The FDA had earlier this year complained about some products on the market including the Zentel and Vermox intestinal dewormers.
The fake Zentel came with 390160 as batch number, 03/11 manufacturing date and 03/16 as expiry date.
The fake Vermox has JANSSEN- CILAG as the name of the manufacturer, with BLL I VOI batch number, 01/2011 manufacturing date and 12/2016 as the expiry date.
Another fake Vermox, however, came up with DBL4GOI as batch number, 02/2013 manufacturing date and 01/2016 as expiry date.
Meanwhile, the Sunyani Office of the FDA has destroyed unwholesome products estimated at about Ghc24, 378.
They were herbal medicines, food, cosmetics and medical equipment.
The products were seized from the Sunyani and Dormaa Municipalities, Sunyani West, Pru, Berekum, Asunafo North, Nkoranza South, Techiman and Asutifi North and South districts.
The exercise was part of FDA’s mandate to undertake the destruction of unwholesome regulated products to prevent their re-entry onto the market.
Mr. Matthew Gyang Nkum, Brong-Ahafo Regional Officer of the FDA, said the products were seized from peddlers, licensed chemical and pharmaceutical shops, herbal medicine clinics and shops, supermarkets, kiosks and provision shops, during a routine Post Market Surveillance (PMS).
Mr. Nkum appealed to wholesale and retail pharmacies, licensed chemical stores, hospitals, clinics, health facilities and the general public to un-stock and hand over fake Zentel and Vermox to the FDA.
The Regional Officer of the FDA advised the general public to take the safety of their health into their own hands, and make conscious efforts to inspect products before purchasing them.