High levels of drugs found "not of standard quality'' in sample tests
Reply by the Union health ministry to an application filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act has pointed to the high levels of spurious and adulterated drugs available in the markets in the country. It has been informed that at least 110 arrests have been made since last year in cases involving fake drugs seizure and trading. The reply shows that the fake drugs are in the range of:
· 10 to 20 per cent in states like Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Gujarat and Maharashtra.
· Just fewer than 5 % in smaller states like Delhi and Goa.
Testing of the drugs randomly has shown that many samples do not conform to the quality parameters:
· nearly 130 drugs out of 800 were found fake this year in UP.
· nearly 162 out of 1,000 samples turned out to be fake last year in UP.
· nearly 210 out of the nearly 3,900 samples tested last year in Tamil Nadu turned out to be fake.
· The drugs tested positive for fake included Pantocid (for acidity), Enalapril (blood pressure), Paracetamol (fever), antibiotics like Ronflox and Oflomac etc.
As per a report on 'Patient Safety and Drug Detection Technology' released last year by Partnership for Safe Medicines India, the country has more than 10,000 manufacturers of pharmaceutical products but those who maintain the standards of 'Good Manufacturing Practices' are very few. In January 2014, the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation declared at least 32 medicines sold in hospitals and chemist shops across India as"not of standard quality" as they failed to qualify the quality parameters.
The data did not include that from North-east states and Bihar.