No fewer than 391 illegal medicine premises have been shut down by the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN) in Enugu State, due to lack of compliance with the agency’s regulatory provisions for practice and operation in the country.
The regulatory body further disclosed that six compliance directives were issued to other premises for poor hygiene and other related offences.
The PCN Registrar, Dr N.A.E. Mohammed, gave the breakdown of the 391 affected premises as 90 pharmacies and 301 patent medicine stores, for failure to comply with the operational guidelines of the Council.
He said reason for the sealing of the premises is to enforce compliance with the agency’s regulatory provisions in practice and operation and also to ensure a safe and sanitized pharmaceutical environment in the nation.
Mohammed, through a statement from the Council condemned the ills of illegal drug distribution in the country and its impacts on the health of the nation, as he urged all stakeholders to play by the rules while trying to bridge the gap in drugs supply and the provision of quality healthcare commodities to the citizenry.
While identifying the challenges brought about by the pandemic which hampered medicines supply across the globe, he however stated that it is not yet uhuru, especially with the spike in COVID-19 cases from India, Brazil, and Turkey, as he advised pharmacists to raise the bar in practice and in provision of better healthcare delivery service.
“In spite of the challenging economic times we find ourselves in, I want to commend players in the Pharmaceutical industry for rising up to the occasion in bridging the gap in supply of healthcare commodities.
“I also want to seize this opportunity to remind us all that we are not yet out of the woods especially with the upsurge in COVID-19 cases in countries like India, Brazil and Turkey. As we approach the end of the second quarter of the year, we encourage pharmacists to be more committed to the task at hand and to raise the bar of practice by providing better quality service to Nigerian citizenry.
“In furtherance of PCN’s continuous efforts to ensure a good, safe and sanitized pharmaceutical environment, the National Enforcement Team visited Enugu State in the month of May, 2021. During the exercise, a total of 391 illegal were sealed, comprising of 90 pharmacies and 301 patent medicines shops for lack of compliance with PCN regulatory provisions in their and operation”, he explained.
Mohammed also hinted on the success of the just concluded 32nd/33rd Annual General Meeting and Scientific Symposium of the West African Postgraduate College of Pharmacists, held recently in Accra, Ghana, which appointed him as Chairman, Drug Advisory Council.
He also mentioned ongoing efforts towards the implementation of Pharmacist Consultant Cadre’ saying PCN in collaboration with Postgraduate College of Pharmacists (WAPCP) Nigeria chapter, organised a sensitization workshop on the issue.
“The PCN would like to encourage all pharmacies especially those in the public sector to rise up to the challenge of delivering exceptional pharmaceutical care to the teeming Nigeria public. This would firther reposition the pharmacists as value adding members of the healthcare team.”, Mohammed noted.