E-DRUG: Ghana to recall substandard antimalarials (2)
I agree with the moderator that it a welcome and essential move that
Ghana is acting on the discovery of substandard and counterfeit antimalarial
products in their pharmaceutical market.
There is evidence that similar surveys conducted in other countries did not
result in action to remove offensive medicines from the market and so protect
The surveys are important initial steps but some important questions need to
be investigated before lasting improvements can possibly result: such as;
-What was the entry point of the counterfeit and substandard products into
the market- what will be done to overcome weaknesses in QA of supply and
distribution security. Are procurement and receipt documentation available
for audit and follow up?
-What training/skills/responsibility do dispensing staff have to assure
quality of the products they are providing to the public? For instance if
medicines are procured from "travelling salespersons as is common with many
other products, can heath care staff differentiate between products of varying
- Given the results of this survey, what is the prediction of the quality
of other products other than antimalarials, in the Ghana market, and
what will be done about a potential more widespread problem?
-What are the essential minimum quality assurance measures that Ghana has in
place, other than periodic surveys, to improve the quality, security and
safety of pharmaceutical products from formulation, manufacture and
through the whole chain to the use of the products by the consumer?
Adjunct Associate Professor
Curtin University School of Pharmacy
Bentley, Western Australia