Wednesday, December 6, 2023

NHRC issues notice to Centre, Drugs Controller General of India over circulation of fake medicines for cancer, liver

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The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Wednesday issued notice to the Union government and the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) over circulation of fake medicines for the treatment of liver and cancer.

The Commission issued notice after taking suo motu cognisance of a media report, which said that after an alert from the World Health Organisation (WHO), the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) has asked the state regulators, doctors and patients to remain vigilant about two medicines – liver drug Defitalio and cancer drug Adcetris as their falsified versions were circulating in four countries, including India.

The report said that falsified versions of Adcetris injection 50mg, detected in four countries, including India, were most often found to be available at the patient level and distributed in unregulated supply chains, mostly online).

The Commission noted that the contents of the news report, if true, raised a serious issue of violation of human rights, which was a matter of concern.

It directed the Secretary of Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare and the DCGI to file a detailed report in the matter within four weeks.

The Commission told the Union Ministry and the drugs control body to include in the report, the present status of implementation of relevant laws to check the supply and sale of the two life-saving drugs, if any, as mentioned in the news report.

As per the media report carried on September 11, 2023, the product did not have marketing authorisation in India and Turkey. However, the falsified versions of Defitalio were detected in India and Turkey, which were supplied outside of regulated and authorised channels.

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