Contaminated drugs:Purchases from two Indian companies suspended

By Don Asoka Wijewardena     

The Health Ministry has suspended the purchase of drugs from two Indian suppliers after two types of drugs had been found to be contaminated.

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena had ordered that the two Indian companies which exported Promethazine Hydrochloride and Acyclovir sodium injection phials found to be contaminated, be informed that the Ministry has suspended the drug purchase from them until further notice.

The injection phials had been found to contain glass particles and some kind of powder, the Health Ministry said.

The Health Ministry spokesman told The Island that some phials of Promethazine Hydrochloride, which had contained glass particles, had been detected in the Padukka rural hospital, while the Ratnapura General Hospital medical staff found foreign substance in Acyclovir sodium injection phials. Investigations had revealed that they were sub-standard drugs.

Minister Sirisena had already informed the Indian Minister of the issue, the spokesman said. The Minister had also decided to send a team of medical experts to Alvita Drug Company in India which manufactured Acyclovir sodium.

The team would examine the drug manufacturing process and future purchasing of drugs from Alvita Company would depend on their recommendations, the spokesman said. The visit of the Sri Lankan medical experts was at the Indian company’s expense, he added.

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