In a worrying development it is learnt ‘81% of total drug samples found substandard across state were lifted from Kashmir’.
Reports have indicated that the trade of substandard drugs is growing in Kashmir with each passing year, data compiled by drug and food control organization (DFCO) has shown.
Pertinently, In 2017-18, at least 69 samples of the total drugs and other healthcare consumables lifted for testing by the DFCO were found to be not of standard quality. “Out of these, only 13 samples were from Jammu division, whereas 51 (81 percent) samples were from markets and hospitals of Kashmir division. Four samples were from Leh and one from Kargil.”
These figures are part of data sourced from DFCO and points towards the growing menace of substandard drugs in Kashmir. As per the data, over 17 percent of total substandard drugs were part of hospital supplies.
It is a known fact that sub standard drugs have devastating impacts on health.
The list of the “not of standard quality” drugs include antibiotic injections from hospital supplies. Among these are Ceftrioxone injection and Cefoparazone injection. In addition, oral antibiotics such as Amocin CV were also found to have shortcomings vis-à-vis drug description requirements.
Surprisingly, iron and folic acid combination, supplied by JKMSCL in bulk for administering to expecting mothers and adolescent girls primarily have also failed quality tests.
Besides, life saving IV fluids and other injectables from open market are part of the not-of-standard quality list as well.
Against the 69 samples found substandard in 2017-18, only 33 had been red flagged in 2016-17. A year earlier in 2015-16, 35 samples had been reported to be substandard.
In the first quarter of 2018-19, 14 drugs have already been reported substandard by DFCO in Kashmir division alone.
In 2017, National Institute of Biologicals published the largest ever survey on the quality of drugs in India.
As per this report, 3.4 percent drugs in J&K were substandard, higher than the national average of 3 percent. The survey put J&K at a dismal 21st rank in terms of availability of quality drugs.
These facts need to considered and evil nipped in the bud.