Drug Trade & the Absent of a Drug Fund [Archives:2001/19/Health]

May 7 2001

Abduaziz M. Abdullah
Drug trading is one of the most profitable activities, whose revenues exceed 200%. If drugs are legally imported or the percentage is even higher. Since we have accepted the policy of an open market, it has consequently led to the spread of the private sector activities in the importation of drugs. In this context we urge upon the Ministry of Health to exercise its authority to limit exploitation of patients by drug traders, especially those who suffer from chronic diseases which require continuous treatment. The Ministry or the Drug Company, in which the government is a shareholder can shoulder, the responsibility of importing drugs of chronic diseases and offer them at reasonable prices. Once I read about the Drug Fund which is an organ of the Ministry of Health, which one of its responsibilities was to make available high quality drugs at reasonable prices. If this happens, it will do patients a great service. It is also necessary to stress the importance of the role of monitoring and inspection in this regard. Monitoring of the government laboratories entrusted with testing imported drugs to make sure of their quality in accordance with the measures and standards set by the WHO is extremely important. The great responsibility attached on the Drug Fund and Laboratories necessitates availability of a well qualified, honest cadre. At the same time the government must ensure a better job condition for them. Some drug traders tend to bribe people in charge of these sensitive units to overlook flaws in their imported goods. This can be avoided if the financial situation of the cadre is improved.