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Health News of Thursday, 30 January 2020

Source: ghananewsagency.org

Upper West OTC medicine sellers schooled on Pharmacovigilance


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The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has trained Over The Counter Medicine Sellers (OTCMS) in the Upper West Region on Pharmacovigilance and Patients Safety to ensure optimum public safety.

The participants were tasked to report drug related challenges to the appropriate quarters.

Drug related problems were listed as inefficacy of medicinal products, adverse drug reactions and other household chemicals that could harm patients.

Speaking at a meeting in Wa, Mr Albert Ankomah, the Upper West Regional Director of the FDA, said the Authority had also trained health staff and pharmacists on Pharmacovigilance.

The World Health Organisation defines Pharmacovigilance as the science and activities related to the detection, assessment, understanding and prevention of adverse effects or any other drug related problems.

Mr Ankomah explained that reporting those issues would enable the authorities and manufacturers of the products to take the necessary actions including withdrawal of the product from the market, reformulation of the product or relabelling it.

He noted that the FDA was also working to ensure that all adverse drug reactions were reported for public safety.

He encouraged the public to report any untoward adverse drug reactions to the pharmacies, institutional contact persons and OTCMS for onward report to the FDA.

On his part, Mr Lateef Agyei-Wiredu, the Upper West Regional Manager of the Pharmacy Council, noted that some individuals applied for OTC certificates but ended up providing services outside the jurisdiction of their mandate.

He described the act as illegal and that perpetrators of the act would be made to face the law when caught.

He also said it was illegal for the OTC operators to work without a valid license and stocking of shop with class “A” and “B” medicines such as penicillin and amoxicillin.

Other offences cited included illegal relocation of business or operating with another person’s license and poor physical structures.

He warned that any person found culpable of those offences would be punished according to the law.

Mr Adam Abdul Rahaman, the Upper West Regional Secretary of the OTC Medicine Sellers Association, commended the Pharmacy Council and FDA for the training.

Similar meetings had also been held in Tumu, Nandom and Jirapa for operators.

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