By Jovita Mirembe
The East African community regulation harmonization programme funded by the Bill and Melinda foundation programme is training drug inspectors to check the entry of substandard sterile medical products (injectables) on the East African market.
Addressing a two-weeks workshop on East African Good Manufacturing Practices (EAC GMP) end of last week at Imperial Resort Beach Hotel, Entebbe, Acting Executive Director of National Drug Authority Kate Kikule said that the training came in handy due to the rapid epidemics that have broken out in Uganda and other east African countries as a whole that need immediate attention.
“We use sterile medical products for immediate medical attention because it runs so fast in the blood stream but if the medicine is substandard it might cause death to the recipient. Therefore on this note we want to make sure that the steriles that come on the east African market are safe for consumption so that we can save lives,” Kikule said.
She said that the inspectors will make site visits where the steriles are manufacturered to see that the medicine being delivered to East African countries meet the specifications and standards required and this information will be shared among member states.
Kikule said that the training is geared at strengthening inspections using latest technology used in the manufacturing process so that they can easily identify substandard products.
The National Medicine Regulation officer representing Uganda in the East African Community, Apollo Angole, said that this is an ongoing five-year project which will end in 2017 and will cost US$12.5m.
Drug Inspectors were drawn from member states of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, United Republic of Tanzania that includes Zanzibar and Uganda as the host.
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EAC drug inspectors trained to curb substandard products