DRAP to register medicines to ensure availability: officials

ISLAMABAD: Realising sufferings of the sufferers as a consequence of unavailability of important medicines, the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) has determined to offer ‘out of queue’ registrations to medicines and medical merchandise together with heparin and imaging dyes to make sure their availability within the nation, officers mentioned on Monday.

They mentioned an inventory of 200 medicines and medical merchandise have been forwarded to the Financial Coordination Committee (ECC) of the federal cupboard to extend their costs as hardship circumstances as within the current costs as neither the native pharmaceutical corporations had been manufacturing them nor importers had been importing a few of the important medicines, which aren’t produced regionally.

“On the directives from the federal government, the DRAP has determined to offer out of queue registrations to many medical merchandise and medicines which aren’t accessible within the nation in the mean time. These merchandise embrace important medicines like heparin, imaging dyes used for angiography and CT scan in addition to immunoglobulin for the remedy of cancers and different ailments,” an official of the Nationwide Well being Companies, Laws and Coordination (NHS,R&C) advised ‘The Information’.

An excessive scarcity of some important medicines and medical merchandise is leading to flooding of counterfeit merchandise which has resulted in deaths of a number of sufferers as a substitute of curing them, well being specialists claimed, saying counterfeit and smuggled merchandise had been being equipped to hospitals and pharmacies throughout Pakistan within the absence of real sufferers.

“A number of sufferers requiring dialysis and different procedures have died throughout Pakistan due to make use of of counterfeit and ineffective Heparin injections throughout the previous few months. Within the absence of real Heparin, counterfeit merchandise had been equipped to the hospitals and offered at pharmacies, which triggered lack of some critically sick sufferers as a substitute of curing them,” a senior pharmacist, related to a number one well being facility in Karachi advised ‘The Information’.

Heparin is a blood thinning agent and anticoagulant, used to deal with coronary heart sufferers and people requiring dialysis however in the mean time, it’s unavailable throughout Pakistan as a consequence of rupee-dollar disparity. Importers are asking for the next worth, whereas the federal government shouldn’t be prepared to extend the value of the important imported drugs.

Equally, an imaging dye used within the angiography and CT scans can also be unavailable within the nation, forcing coronary heart establishments to restrict the variety of ‘elective angiographies’, interventional cardiologists mentioned, including that scarcity of imaging dyes was inflicting struggling to coronary heart sufferers throughout the nation.

“We face issues in buying imaging dyes and as a consequence of that we have now lowered the variety of elective angiographies. Now we have approached totally different distributors for the availability of imaging dyes however they’re expressing their incapacity to supplying the medical product in our required amount,” a senior interventional heart specialist on the Nationwide Institute of Cardiovascular Illnesses (NICVD) mentioned.

Pharmacists at some main healthcare amenities mentioned they’re additionally dealing with an acute scarcity of 10 most vital and life-saving medication, including that unavailability of those medication is hampering their efforts to avoid wasting the lives of critically-ill sufferers. “We face scarcity of some life-saving medication, together with Calcium Chloride, Norepinephrine, Protamine, Heparin, Rh(D) immune globulin, Streptokinase, Dactinomycin injection, Sodium Nitroprusside injection, Minocycline tablets and Morphine 30mg capsules,” mentioned Salwa Ahsan, a senior pharmacist related to a tertiary-care non-public well being facility in Islamabad.

She mentioned once they introduced the difficulty of unavailability of those medication into the discover of Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP), they had been requested to import them on their very own, which was not a sustainable answer.

Distributors supplying imported medicines and medical merchandise claimed that improve in the price of imported medicines as a consequence of devaluation of rupee towards greenback was a significant hurdle in importing and supplying these merchandise on costs fastened by the DRAP, including that except costs of important medicines are usually not elevated, availability of those merchandise couldn’t be ensured.

Commenting on the scarcity of medicines, the DRAP officers mentioned an inventory of 200 medicines had been forwarded to the Financial Coordination Committee (ECC) of the federal cupboard for growing their costs as hardship circumstances, including that if the ECC authorized new costs, it might assist in making certain availability of those important medicines within the nation.