Local pharmaceutical companies have never provided the Directorate General of Drug Administration (DGDA) with any official details regarding the disposal of expired drugs and medicines.
DGDA Director General Maj Gen M Mahbubur Rahman brought the matter to light at a press briefing titled “Dengue Fever and Expired Medicines,” held at the Health Ministry auditorium on Monday.
“In the history of Bangladesh, local pharmaceutical companies have never officially informed the government any details regarding expired drug disposal,” the DGDA director general told reporters.
“As part of a DGDA campaign against expired medicines, pharmaceutical companies have agreed to dispose expired medicines after withdrawing them from the market by July 2. As part of a fresh initiative, the DGDA has directed pharmaceutical companies to release information on the amount of expired medicines disposed during a certain period of time,” he further said.
Present at the event, Health and Family Welfare Minister Zahid Maleque said: “We will do our best to ensure that pharmaceutical companies and pharmacies handle expired medicines and drugs as per guidelines.
“We will follow the World Health Organisation guideline for disposing expired medicines.”
The High Court on June 18 directed the government to take necessary action to stop the sale of expired medicines, and dispose or withdraw the drugs from the market within 30 days.
The court also ordered the formulation of an independent investigation committee to identify expired medicines and their suppliers.
Manjur Mohammad Sahriar, deputy director of the Directorate of National Consumer Rights Protection, had said at a recent event that around 93 percent of the pharmacies in Dhaka sell expired medicines.