Over 200,000 people saved from unqualified drug outlet operators
National Drug Authority enforcement operation in South Eastern Region, covering the entire Busoga Region has saved an estimated population of 50,000 from quacks or unqualified healthy personnel operating unlicensed drug shops.
This was through closure of 138 drug outlets during the ongoing enforcement operation that begun on Monday 10, June 2018 and ending today Friday 14, June 2019.
The operation held in 14 districts led to inspection of 261 drug outlets, and 270 boxes of assorted medicine estimated at Ushs. 94,450,000 impounded from 138 drug shops. (Statistics to be adjusted after today’s report)
Closing 138 outlets saved the unsuspecting population from being conned by quacks or unqualified health personnel. This further promotes a quality health service delivery system resulting in better treatment of illnesses and prevention of diseases as the population access medicines from only licensed drug outlets manned by qualified healthy personnel.
The Districts covered in the operation were 14, and included Bugiri, Buikwe, Bugweri, Buyende, Iganga, Jinja, Kaliro, Kamuli, Kayunga, Luuka, Mayuge, Mukono, Namayingo and Namutumba.
There were 4 arrests made during the operation and all are in custody and are pending prosecution.
- Malinga and Ssekimpi Hajadu held at Namutumba Police Station
- Mwanyi Martin from Nansololo Trading Centre held at Kamuli Police Station
- Nabirye Aidah of Kamuli and detained at Jinja Central Police Station.
Many unlicensed drug outlets at various landing sites had evaded us for quite some time but the operation was very successful as we managed to apprehend them on landing sites like Bwondha, Kisenyi, Galilaaya and Kawongo.
We discovered 600 freshly supplied units of grip water that were about to expire, in Ntuuyo Drug Shop, Iganga town. Such drugs are a risk to the community as some unscrupulous individuals engage in relabeling.
Other outlets visited included 13 vet drug shops and 10 pharmacies.
The objectives of this operation are to save the public from unlicensed and unqualified personnel handling human and veterinary medicines, crack down on dealers in substandard, and counterfeit medicines, and hawkers of drugs.
Medicines in the hands of unqualified persons and stored in unsuitable conditions expose the population in the region and the entire country to wrong prescription, drug resistance, and other health related risks or complications including death.
This cumulatively brings it to a total of 1,206 drug outlets visited since the beginning of the NDA operations in March 2019, including other regions, leading to closure of 592, impounding 1,034 boxes of assorted medicines, estimated at Ush. 361,900,000 and effecting 38 arrests. The entire operation to date has protected an estimated 296,000 unsuspecting persons of unlicensed and unqualified drug outlet operators.
During the operations in all regions covered, veterinary outlets inspected were 71, and impounded 133 boxes of assorted medicines estimated at Ushs.72,200,000.
Challenges experienced in the course of doing our work included;
- Absence of in-charges of drug shops leaving the businesses to be operated by unqualified personnel.
- Unsuitable premises which compromise the quality of medicines.
- Operators effecting payment without filling in licensing forms and submitting them to NDA to grant them permission to operate.
- Many Drug outlets close their premises at the site of NDA vehicles.
- Drug shops conducting clinical work of which includes St. Denis in Kangulumira.
- Hostile members of the public that obstructed our inspectors during their course of duty.
- Difficult terrain in some areas made it difficult for us to access them
We appeal to the general public to be vigilant, appreciative, supportive of NDA in the course of doing our work, and urge you to report any anomalies on our toll free lines 0800 101 999. Safe drugs save lives