Harmful medicines bought by Kuwaitis & expats online

A strange trend has become the order of the day in Kuwait as medicines, food supplements, herbs and other ingredients which can be termed anonymous and sometimes harmful to human health continue to be bought by Kuwaitis and expatriates living in Kuwait via express mail often bought online, reports Al-Qabas daily.

These medicines are promoted in the social media and according to the Assistant Undersecretary for Drugs Control at the Ministry of Health, Dr Abdullah Al-Bader, some people buy medicines ‘online’ in violation of the provisions of Law No. 28 of 1996 which regulates the pharmaceutical profession and drug handling.

He explained it has been widely noticed that medications, pharmaceutical products, herbal remedies and medicinal plants have entered the country recently, which necessitated the move to protect the health of citizens and residents. He pointed out the Ministry of Health informed the General Administration of Customs to prevent the entry of medicines, pharmaceutical products, food supplements, herbs and medicinal plants and all products which are subject to the Drug and Food Control Sector of the Ministry of Health without obtaining the approval of the Department of Registration and Control of Medicines and Plants of the Ministry.

Al-Bader indicated Article 38 of the law stipulates that the import of any medicines into the country is not permissible other than by the ministry and its agents and pharmaceutical companies which are legally authorized to import.

However, no medicine can be imported if it is not registered with the ministry and the same goes with the import of empty packages.

Al-Bader pointed out those who violate the ministry directives face imprisonment of not more than two years and a fine not exceeding 3,000 dinars, or one of the two penalties, especially those who violate the rules regulating the process of registering the medicine, or importing medicines or preparations not registered with the Health Ministry.

He added: “The close cooperation between the ministry and the customs contributes greatly to preventing the entry of any unregistered drugs that may endanger the lives of citizens and residents. Meanwhile, sources at the Ministry of Communications said postal parcels are examined using advanced technical devices in coordination with the General Administration of Customs.

Source : Arab Times

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