The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration (NAFDAC) has described a recent publication of a research finding alleging that nearly all paracetamol tablets sold in Nigeria are under-dosed as misleading.
Director-general of NAFDAC, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, who made this known in a statement on Monday, also said that the science behind the finding was questionable.
She said, “NAFDAC is aware of a recent story presently being circulated on social media alleging that nearly all paracetamol tablets sold in Nigeria are under-dosed. We have received a copy of the publication of the research finding of the subject and we wish to state categorically that the report is misleading, and the science is questionable.
“As the quality culture of NAFDAC demands, as soon as the Agency became aware of the news, the Director General, had meetings with the respective directors and gave a directive that a survey of the market should be done to sample and test.”
The NAFDAC DG said she has met with the leadership of the Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Group of the Manufacturing Association of Nigeria (MAN) to inform them of the agency’s intent.
She explained that, “NAFDAC’s laboratories are ISO 17025-certified every year to ensure that the procedures used for testing are based on international standards and the equipment or instruments used are qualified similarly.
“We do yearly post-marketing survey of medicines to ensure that the quality and safety are maintained. Where there is a deviation from this, i.e., whenever we find any regulated product to be substandard or falsified, NAFDAC regularly issues public alerts or do recalls. In the last two years we have issued eighty-eight (88) public alerts and ordered thirty-two (32) recalls for medicines and foods.
“We are using this medium to assure the public that NAFDAC is using international standards and scientific method to survey the paracetamol product where samples are collected from different parts of the country in the right amount and will be tested using well calibrated, and qualified state-of-the-art equipment or instruments.
“We want to reiterate that NAFDAC has five ISO-17025 Laboratories across the country, and a WHO Prequalified Laboratory at Yaba Lagos where medicines are tested for quality and safety. The laboratories test medicines using official monographs of British Pharmacopeia, United States Pharmacopoeia, and International Pharmacopoeia.”
Adeyeye assured Nigerians that they would be updated as soon as the agency was done with the laboratory testing.
“NAFDAC wishes to reassure the public that the agency is very vigilant in her responsibilities in safeguarding the health of the nation,” she added. (Leadership)