Minister lauds training center aimed at eliminating fake drugs



The Minister of Health, Alex Segbefia, has lauded the opening of a new pharmaceutical and microbiology laboratory at the Centre for Pharmaceutical Advancement and Training (CePAT) in Accra.

The Centre for Pharmaceutical Advancement and Training, which was launched in 2013, has so far trained about 190 professionals from 32 countries across the continent on a wide range of pharmaceutical regulatory quality assurance and quality control functions.

Speaking at the opening of the new facility, Alex Segbefia said, the Laboratory will complement the efforts of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) and help to comprehensively monitor the counterfeiting menace in the West African sub-region.

‘‘It’s quite clear that more and more we are getting people trying to take advantage of the commercial situation in the country. And therefore you are going to end up with a lot of people having fake drugs, fake pharmaceuticals so anything that adds to checking on this is welcome. You cannot just deal with Ghana alone because we do import drugs.”

“…So you need to be able to have a group like this that actually cover the whole West African sub region. That way, you are not only checking one set of drugs in one country, you are looking at the whole area where we import and export our drugs. So it can only be welcome news, to have such an establishment in Ghana and at the level at which it is,” he said.

The center which was set up three years ago is to help build capacity for those who work and procure medicine for government and donor agencies.

Manager of CePAT, Mr. Kwasi Poku Boateng added that the facility is aimed at training people, build their capacity as well as provide a facility to make testing of medicine easier and simpler.

“Apart from the classroom training, we take them to the laboratory where you have hands-on training to be able to understand and do a better job out there.”

He added that ensuring that quality medicines are allowed into the country is the responsibility of the state, but since the state may not be able to handle the challenge alone, they have taken it upon themselves to extend a helping hand. This way, perpetrators can be brought to book and handled accordingly.

“We are committed to contributing our quota to the fight against poor quality medicine because we are all consumers of medicine. If there is any poor quality medicine out there, then we are all at risk. That is why everybody should join in fighting against it’’.

By: Jessica Ayorkor Aryee/citifmonline.com/Ghana

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