A Senate panel has expressed concerns at a high number of deaths in the country caused by fake medicines and quacks and directed the relevant authorities to take action against people and firms involved in manufacturing spurious drugs.
Senator Haseeb Khan, convener of the Senate Standing Committee on Health, at a meeting of the panel here on Tuesday asked the government to immediately appoint a head of the Pakistan Drug Regulatory Authority (DRAP).
Dr Javed Iqbal, a health ministry official, said that the government recently confiscated a plant that was manufacturing substandard drugs at Gadoon Amazai in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
Iqbal said the government had issued show-cause notices to 48 drug manufacturing companies. He said the country was exporting drugs worth $200 million ever year.
He said it had become difficult to keep a check on 600 manufacturing units with only 13 drug inspectors in the country. He said there was shortage of 400 staffers to look after other work related to drug manufacturing in the country.
Senators also directed the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council to register graduates of College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan (CPSP).
The college representatives at a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Health claimed that the council was giving preference to foreign graduates.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 7th, 2014.