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National Drug Authority Warns Public on Illegal Medicines

The National Drug Authority has urged the public against buying medicines that aren’t translated in English.

This comes follows the findings that some imported medicines on the Ugandan market aren’t labelled or translated in English yet it is mandatory.

For example, NDA recently found TobraDex that is produced by Alcon in Turkish yet it is supposed to be translated in English.

“NDA informs healthcare providers and the general public against using imported drugs which are not labelled or translated in English. Any person involved in the sale and/or dispensing of such illegal products will be prosecuted in accordance with the law,” NDA said in a statement.

Asked on how such drugs enter the country, Fredrick Ssekyana, the NDA Spokesperson, said in every society there are elements of people who will try by all means to beat the established systems, noting that it is the reason why they have inspectors on the ground for surveillance purposes.

“Information provided is that during the post market surveillance, the said products were found in four pharmacies and collected by our inspectors. However, the quantities were small as those collected were 20 pieces,” Ssekyana said in an exclusive interview with Business Focus.

He added: “The pharmacies where the pieces were picked availed NDA inspectors the receipts issued to facilitate in apprehending the culprits. It is also suspected that these being high value products-each sold at Shs30,000, they must have been smuggled into the county through non-designated points.”

On whether illegal medicines are fake as well, Ssekyana said: “Not really, but NDA cannot guarantee its quality, safety and effectiveness because it is not authorized by us. What the Authority authorizes or approves, it’s sure of its quality.”


Taddewo William Senyonyi
William is a seasoned business and finance journalist. He is also an agripreneur and a coffee enthusiast.

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