George Onyejiuwa, Owerri
The Pharmacists Council of Nigeria ( PCN) has sealed the premises of 431 Pharmaceutical outlets in various part of the state for various offences.
This was just as the Council has advised the public to always request for the registration status of operators by asking for licenses from any Pharmaceutical outlet to safeguard themselves from patronising quacks.
The Director, Inspection and Monitoring of the Council, Mrs. Anthonia Aruya, disclosed this, on Friday, in Owerri, Imo State capital, while briefing journalists on the enforcement activities of the Council in Drug Distribution nationwide.
According to her, “This is the 27th state that the council is visiting. Various parts of the state were visited during this period .
“At the end of the exercise a total 522 premises, comprising 103 Pharmacies and 419 Proprietors of Patent Medicine Vendors (PPMVs).
She added, 431 premises were sealed, comprising of 45 Pharmacies and 386 PPMVs , while 13 premises were given compliance directives for various offences ranging from improper handling of controlled substances, unhygienic environment and poor documentation, dispensing ethical/prescription drugs without the presence of a Pharmacist”.
Mrs. Aruya said that PCN which is charged with the responsibility of regulating ,education, training and practice of Pharmacy in all its aspects and ramifications must continue to enforce the guidelines put in place to promote rational distribution of drugs in line with the National Drug Distribution Policy of the Federal Government.
” This is to ensure that minimum standards of practice are put in place to ensure that quality ,safety and efficacy of medicines are maintained down the distribution value chain.
“Standards to be maintained include the conditions of storage set by the manufacturers and adhering to good standards of practice as provided by the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria until it gets to the end user”.
She disclosed that observations from the field in Imo state revealed that many people go into the sales of medicine without following due process, while others do not have the requisite knowledge or skill to handle medicines in their premises or have been operating beyond their approved scope.
“The general public is advised to source its drug needs from registered Pharmacy outlet and registered PPMV shops for over the counter drugs as drugs in unregistered outlets cannot be guaranteed to be genuine,” she said.