By ChIOMA OBINNA
With $200 billion counterfeit drugs in circulation globally, Director-General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, Dr. Paul Orhii has urged the World Health Organisation, WHO, the developed countries and stakeholders in the pharmaceutical industry across the globe to actively support the proposed Member-States Mechanism for combating substandard, spurious, falsely-labeled, falsified and counterfeit medical products.
Also, the Agency has taken its product monitoring surveillance to the on going Lagos International Trade Fair.
Orhii who chaired one of the sessions of the 5-day 15th International Conference of Drug Regulatory Authorities, ICDRA held in Tallin, Estonia, noted that the international community should consider the menace of counterfeit drugs from strictly public health perspective.
He further enjoined them to join forces in tackling the problem as a global challenge not just an issue for developing countries.
He posited that the ICDRA should include information sharing, intelligence gathering monitoring and surveillance, developing new tools of detecting, preventing and controlling counterfeits as well as capacity building.
“NAFDAC is currently spearheading local and international collaboration against drug counterfeiting particularly within Sub-Saharan Africa in addition to other well coordinated and multifaceted strategies to combat the problem.”
The Director-General commended the thought provoking presentation by Head of Drug Control Board of Sierra Leone, Mr. Johnson Wiltshire and other speakers from over 100 Countries who participated at the ICDRA Conference.