By; PAMELA EBOH, Awka
The Pharmacists Council of Nigeria, (PCN) has kicked off enforcement programme of it activities across states in Nigeria in fulfillment of its mamdate as stated in PCN ACT CAP P17, LFN, 2004.
Addressing journalists in Awka on its programme, the Director, Inspection and Monitoring, Pharmacists Council of Nigeria, Pharm (Mrs) Anthonia Aruya said that the activities are geared at streamlining the drug distribution value chain to promote the provision of safe, effective and quality medicines distributed along registered and currently licenced premises.
She reeled out the premises to include where drugs are manufactured, distributed, wholesaler, retailed and warehoused.
Others are hospital pharmacies and the Patent and proprietary medicines vendor’s shops.
The Director said, “The Pharmacist Council of Nigeria along with other regulatory agencies under the leadership of the Honourable Minister of Health is in the process of relocating all open drug markets to Coordinated Wholesale Centers where they will be properly regulated by the PCN and NAFDAC.
She explained that the Council was in the state in continuation of its activities aimed at sanitizing the systems better pharmaceutical services delivery to the good people of the state and the nation at large.
Aruya said that at the end of the exercise, a total of 779 were visited comprising 191 pharmacies and 588 patent medicine shops adding that 577 premises were sealed.
The sealed premises include 96 pharmacies and 481 patent medicine shops while 19 were issued compliance directives for various offences ranging from poor handling of controlled substances, sale and dispensing of ethical/prescription drugs without the supervision of a pharmacist, unhygienic environment, poor documentation among others.
According to her, premises seeking to be registered for the reason of providing pharmaceutical services are inspected in Linc with principles of good pharmacy practices (GPP) to ensure they meet up with the minimum acceptable standards of practice before they are licenced to operate.
Aruya added that licences are issued to stakeholders based on their training saying that medicines if not properly handled or administered can be injurious to the end user.
She warned that that any premises found selling and dispensing without approval or selling above their scope of operation such as sake and dispensing of ethical products without the presence of Supritebdent pharmacistsor handling of controlled medicines by non pharmacist is operating in violation of the law.