Apr 01, 2018 News
The possibility of expired drugs being dispensed at the West Demerara Regional Hospital or any other health facility might be a near impossible undertaking.
At least this is according to information shared by Director of the Department of Pharmacy Services, Mr. Oneil Atkins.
Atkins remarks in this regard, follow revelations at the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee [PAC] that a stock of expired drugs to the tune of some $5M was still housed at the bond of the West Demerara Regional Hospital in Region Three [Essequibo Islands/West Demerara].
“I want to ensure the public, through the Department of Pharmacy Services, that the Public Health Ministry will do all in its power to ensure that medicines reaching the public are kept safe with assured potency and ethically dispensed too,” Atkins assured.
He moreover insisted that public health safety will not be endangered by expired medicines issued through the public health sector.
“I want to assure the Minister and government that the Department of Pharmacy Services and its sister agencies [Government Analyst Food and Drug Department [GAFD], Pharmacists and their Assistants] will stand to such a mandate,” Atkins said.
The Ministry had reportedly gotten wind that public anxieties were heightened with news reports concerning the existence of the expired items on the shelves of the Region Three Hospital.
This was coupled with the belief that there was a likelihood that patients could have been issued with those expired and potentially life-threatening pharmaceuticals.
What has been happening, Atkins said, is that deliberate efforts are being made to ensure that medicines that are safe and intended for the public are kept safe and separate from those that have been expired.
Atkins, who is also Advisor to Public Health Minister, Ms. Volda Lawrence, on the pharmaceutical sub-sector, explained that all the necessary administrative procedures were completed for removal and destruction of the expired pharmaceutical items at the Haags Bosch Sanitary Landfill site, Eccles, East Bank Demerara. However, he disclosed that “some logistical problems in Region Three stalled the move.”
The Auditor General’s 2016 Report cited a number of expired drugs at the West Demerara Hospital and several Health Centres within Region Three. But Atkins, an experienced pharmacist, noted “there will not be in any pharmacy soon-to-be-expired or expired medicines. These are usually in a safe place,” he added.
According to the public sector protocol followed by West Demerara Hospital authorities, the expired drugs were noted and the quantities were quarantined for destruction.
As such, Atkins disclosed that a note was taken and sent to the Government Analyst Food and Drug Department, notifying officials there of the need to destroy the useless items.
Atkins also stated that Environmental Health Officers [EHOs] in the Regions are empowered to destroy expired medicines and further denied that the expired drugs were housed in the same structure with unexpired pharmaceuticals.
“These are housed in a building away from the main pharmacy bond,” Atkins emphasized. Regional Health Officer [RHO], Dr. Ravendra Dudhnath, had echoed similar sentiments to those of Atkins, while fielding queries from PAC members.
Jun 21, 2021Kaieteur News – By Franklin Wilson Team Evolution’s Christopher ‘Chicken Legs’ Griffith crossed the line in One Hour 41 Minutes 36.22 Seconds to win the Banks DIH sponsored Malta...
Jun 21, 2021
Jun 21, 2021
Jun 20, 2021
Jun 20, 2021
Jun 20, 2021
Kaieteur News – I am quoting the words of Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine in an interview of September, 2017, that he gave Dr.... more
By Sir Ronald Sanders More commonality was shown by CARICOM countries in a vote on Tuesday June 15 at the Organisation of... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]