No fewer than 373 pharmacies and patent drug stores have been sealed by the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria in Ogun State for various offences.
The Director, Inspection and Monitoring of PCN, Mrs Anthonia Aruya, revealed this on Friday in Abeokuta, while briefing journalists about the activities of the council.
She said 15 pharmacies and 358 patent drug stores were affected, while giving the breakdown. She said their offences ranged from operating without registration with the council, failure to renew premises licence, dispensing ethical products without the supervision of a pharmacist, and poor sanitary conditions among others.
Aruya said the action became necessary to save the public from purchasing drugs from unregistered outlets.
She said, “The Pharmacists Council of Nigeria cannot guarantee that such drugs retain same integrity as specified by the manufacturers since they have not submitted to regulation that ensures maintenance of minimum standards for handling such products.”
Aruyo added that PCN enforcement teams had visited 44 pharmacies and 391 patent medicine stores across Ogun State.
She said the teams discovered that so many pharmacies and patent stores commenced operations without fulfilling minimum requirements for registration, while others failed to renew their licences.
Aruya said such exercise had been carried out in other 15 states of the federation. She said, “The PCN enforcement teams have been in Ogun state from the beginning of the week. What we observed in Ogun state is that so many premises commenced operations without fulfilling minimum requirements for registration while others failed to renew their licence to operate such shops.
“Some of these premises store products in an environment where quality, safety and efficacy of pharmaceutical products cannot be guaranteed.
“This exposes the public to serious danger. Others do not have the requisite knowledge of know-how to handle the highly ethical drugs in their facilities.
“This exercise is part of efforts by the PCN to reverse this ugly trend and improve on the level of pharmaceutical service delivery to the people in the state.”
Aruya urged members of the public to ensure they purchased medicines from registered pharmacies and simple household remedies from licensed patent stores.
She warned people to desist from starting pharmaceutical business without proper documentation with the PCN.