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Scrutiny
  
OTC poison...
Medicines sans prescription must be stopped
14/12/2006

The sale of globally banned drugs through OTC (Over the Counter) is alarmingly on the rise in India. While all attention of the government seems to be on controlling prices of branded drugs and making generic versions available, it’s high time for the government to ensure there is strict control and vigilance on drugs that are easily available over the counter (which can be purchased without the prescription of a registered medical practitioner).

While chemists are more than happy to sell them for high margins; patients find it a convenient way to take care of the so-called ‘non-serious ailments’ and avoid going through the tumultuous process of visiting the doctor. But what they remain unaware of is the serious side effects of drugs like Analgin, Nimesulide, D’cold & Vicks 500. Almost all the ‘common cold drugs’ contain in them harmful ingredients like phenylpropanolamine. This chemical is banned in most of the developed countries as they are reported to be responsible for heart attacks. Analgin on the other hand has serious ramifications on bone marrow. Even though the government can claim to have brought out a number of notifications that ban the manufacture and sale of as many as 70 such drug combinations, the problem still continues to persist across pharma retail outlets in India. With MNCs selling banned drugs in India, matters are only getting worse.

By:- BE Edit Bureau
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