On 09/Feb/2019 / In Medical News
The West African Health Organisation has called for easy access to quality, safe and affordable medicines across countries in the region. It stressed that the need to strengthen local production and make drugs affordable in West Africa was paramount.
The Director-General of the organisation, Prof Stanley Okolo, made the call at the closing ceremony of a steering committee meeting of the West African Medicines Regulatory Harmonisation in Lagos.
Okolo noted that the delay in the registration of medicines and the high incidence of substandard and fake drugs in circulation were among the challenges facing regulatory agencies in West Africa.
“This should not deter us from achieving our common goal and that is why we have agreed to jointly register and regulate medicines produced locally and imported into the region, with the aim of reducing the time of registration and improving access to medicines as well as ensure better regulatory oversight.
“The quality of health of over 350 million people in the region is paramount and it is a great honour for me to lead this steering committee to strategise and take decisions to ensure access to quality, safe, efficient and affordable medical products for the people,” the DG said.
In her remark, the Director-General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, emphasised that collaboration and vigilance in West Africa would help to strengthen the borders and prevent fake drugs from entering the Nigerian market.
Earlier, a Senior Health Specialist at the World Bank, Mrs. Aissatou Diack, said that bank was delighted to lead the initiative to harmonise and regulate medicines in Africa in order to promote regional coordination and capacity building.
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