FDA sets ball rolling in Pune

The city’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has taken the first step towards tackling any possible medicine shortages, which has been ignited after chemists affiliated to the Maharashtra State Chemist and Druggist Association’s (MSCDA) refused to call off their nine-day-old strike of purchasing medicines.

FDA officials yesterday held a meeting with 30 representatives of hospitals and pharmacy chain stores who assured them that they would increase medicine purchases to prevent any shortfalls.

Bitter pill: People buying medicines at a pharmacy. With chemists affiliated to the MSCDA refusing to call off their stir, the FDA has put in place an alternative system to prevent any medicine shortages; (above left) MiD DAY’s earlier reports dated June 7 and 11 on the looming medical crisis. Pic/Krunal Gosavi

MiD DAY had earlier reported on FDA’s initiative (‘FDA designs ‘alternative system’ of medicine to tide over chemist stir,’ June 11). MSCDA members have stopped purchasing medicines from June 3, alleging harassment from FDA officials and have decided to surrender their license to the FDA on July 15.

B R Masal, joint commissioner, FDA (Drug), said “We had called a meeting of wholesale medicine dealers from hospitals and medical stores. At the meet, we informed them to purchase extra medicine to tackle the shortage of medicine, so that patients are not affect. They have agreed to purchase extra medicines. This will help patients get medicines on time and also help to tackle the shortage in the city.”

Rajesh Jain, representative of Wellness Forever Lifestyle Chemists, said, “We are always ready to help people, and per FDA’s request we are purchasing extra stock so that needy people and patients are not inconvenienced. Patient have to only approach us with the prescription and required medicine will be made available to them. We are also providing medicine to doctors and retailers if they demand.”

Sambhaji Talekar, medical store in-charge of Ruby Hall Clinic, said “At the meeting yesterday, we were also handed a letter from with FDA officials permitting purchase of extra stock. We are also willing to supply medicine to small retailers as per their demand.”

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