Few inspectors to check pharmacies

ABU DHABI — A senior health official has expressed grave concern over the lack of an adequate number of inspectors to scrutinise private pharmacies, which he said takes the pressure off the drug violators and endangers public safety.

By A Staff Reporter

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Published: Wed 3 May 2006, 11:29 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 7:36 PM

“There are only two inspectors in Dubai who are supposed to keep a vigilant eye on about 350 private pharmacies.

Consequently, control on these outlets could be considered as zero," the officical who requested anonymity told Khaleej Times yesterday.

He said the ministry was urged several times to increase the number of inspectors but all efforts went in vain.

"We have demanded several times that inspectors should be increased but nothing happened. Recruitment procedures on the other hand are very complicated and primitive. Designations should be clear and inspection should not be considered as an additional task for inspectors," he said.

"The situation is even worse in the Northern Emirates where there are only one or two inspectors for each medical district. In Sharjah there are about 300 pharmacies while the number of inspectors does not exceed two," lamented the official.

He said the scarcity of inspectors has adversely affected the process of confiscating counterfeit and contraband pharmaceutical products.

He also criticised the inspection system carried out on private pharmacies and described it as 'inefficient'.

"Pharmacists are well aware that inspectors will visit them once or twice a year. The system of conducting inspection raids is inefficient whereby inspection operations are not carried out simultaneously," pointed out the official.

He said technically speaking, insufficient a human resources recruited to monitor private pharmacies, has also in many ways negatively influenced the standards of registration and laboratory analysis set by the ministry to guarantee safety of medicines available in the local market.

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