Nasarawa state government has confirmed the collaboration with National Agency for Food, Drugs, Administration and Control (NAFDAC) agency and Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria (PCN) to use TruScan technology to fight counterfeit drugs in the state.Permanent Secretary, Nasarawa state Ministry of Health Mallam Ishaku Abari, who made this known yesterday in Lafia at a one day sensitization workshop organised by Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria (PCN) on continuing Professional Development Education Program for Pharmacist Technicians practicing in Nasarawa state.
Abari said the TruScan technology will allow officials of the ministry conduct field based screening of pharmaceutical samples to quickly and accurately identify counterfeits.
Represented by Mallam Haruna Wakili, Director of Pharmaceutical Services at the state Ministry of Health said the collaboration with PCN and NAFDAC was crucial and will go a long way to ensuring that counterfeit drugs are rid of in the state given the pivotal roles the duo agencies play in fighting counterfeit drugs in the country.
“The bottom line is to mobilize suppport and collaboration of all stakeholders to stenghten on our efforts to expand our existing systems against counterfeiters. That is why the Nasarawa state government is collaborating with PSN and NAFDAC to make use of TruScan to fight counterfeit drugs in the state,” He said.
Abari also called on Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) to fast track the process of setting up Mega Drug Distribution Centers (MDDCs) as their own contribution to eradicating counterfeit drugs in the state.
On his part, Nasarawa state PSN Chairman Pharm. Abdulmalik Usman, said PSN chose to be part of the training to bring closer pharmacists and phamacist technicians for efficient and effective healthcare service delivery in the state.
“The reason we are here is because we discovered that there was a lacuna between the relationship of pharmacists and pharmacist technicians in the state for some years back. So we felt it will be wise to bring them together because all pharmacist technicians are suppose to work under the supervision of pharmacists. If there is no cordial relationship, a lot will not be attained. So we are organising this workshop in collaboration with PCN who are the regulatory body,” He said.
Usman revealed that the job of a pharmacist technician is not restricted to hospitals as they can also work in pharmaceutical industries, education and research training institutes and community pharmacies among others.
The TruScan testing device is a hand held device introduced by NAFDAC to detect counterfeiting medicines on the spot in minutes.