To reduce fake and substandard drugs in Nigeria, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) said it will open eight additional laboratories.
Minister of Health, Osagie Emmanuel Ehanire, stated this while declaring open the 3rd African Medicine Quality Forum (AMQF) meeting at Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, on Tuesday.
He said NAFDAC currently operates seven laboratories to ensure only safe and efficacious drugs are available in Nigeria.
He said the AMQF will assist member states to fight substandard and proliferation of fake drugs and secure the well being of all Africans.
He urged participants at the meeting to use the platform for advocacy and provide government with reliable data to completely eradicate substandard drugs in the continent.
Director-general of NAFDAC, Professor Mojisola Christianah Adeyeye said, “NAFDAC advocates daily for quality of medicines in the nation’s supply chain through strengthening of our internal capacities such as having quality laboratories with modern equipment with trained personnel, strong post marketing surveillance, inspection of manufacturing facilities and enforcement using international best practices.
“AMQF is a platform for a holistic continental quality control agenda that facilitates sharing of best practices, an advocacy platform to raise the national and international visibility of National Quality Control Laboratories (NQCL),” she said.
Director-general West African Health Organisation (WAHO) Stanley Okolo said, apart from ensuring quality control in Africa, AMQF is ensuring that indigenous and traditional medicines manufacturers are promoted and assisted to source external funds.
Chairman House Committee on Health Care Services, Dr Sununu Yusuf, said the scourge of substandard and falsified medicines is hampering safe health care delivery in Nigeria and many countries globally.
“As legislators, we shall commit to enacting laws and regulations that ensure only safe and efficacious medicines are available to our people.”
He urge the participants to develop proposal to ensure that national quality control laboratories have the required legal mandate and well defined scope of activities.