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Pharmacy Board Builds Capacity of Staff

Pharmacy Board Builds Capacity of Staff

The Drug and Pharmaceuticals Regulatory Agency in Sierra Leone, ‘Pharmacy Board,’ in ensuring the continued capacity building of members of its Staff has conducted a one week refresher training for 30 Pharmacy Inspectors in the Drug Evaluation and Good Manufacturing Practice according to the requirements of the World Health Organization (WHO).

Registrar of the Pharmacy Board of Sierra Leone, WCN Johnson, told journalists in Freetown that “the refresher training in a continuation of a previous one held in 2009 for Pharmacy Board Staffs in order to bring them to speed with current trends and the best practices in Good Manufacturing Practice and Drug Dossier Evaluation”.  Speaking on the rationale of the training programme, Johnson said “this is done in accordance with the laws of Sierra Leone that requires an Inspection of all drug manufacturing plants or factories for suitability before medicines from such facilities are allowed to be imported into the country”.

Ghanaian based trainer, Pharmacist Karikari-Boateng from the Food and Drugs Board of Ghana explained that the course comes in two parts – Dossier Evaluation and Good Manufacturing Practice for the Inspection of pharmaceutical manufacturing industries. The trainer said “the evaluation of drug dossiers is in line with WHO standards and requirements for best practice that ensures that information provided by manufacturers as to the quality of medicines are consistent with findings from quality control tests carried out by the Pharmacy Board”. This he further told journalists “will ensure that only medicines of high quality make their way into the country’s drug market to enhance general drug safety and protect the public health of the citizenry.

On the aspect of Good Manufacturing Practice Inspection, Karikari-Boateng said some so-called manufacturing industries fall far below the required standard as to the suitability of their manufacturing plants and the maintenance of best practice in the manufacturing of medicines and as such every Drug Regulatory Agency in the world is expected to ensure that all such manufacturing agencies are inspected according to WHO requirement before their products are allowed to be marketed in member countries.

Pharmacist Karikari Boateng confirmed that this is a review of the last training held by the Board and that it is to assess how much Pharmacy Board Inspectors were able to grasp and follow up the objective of the last training conducted in 2009. He maintained that “indeed there is every indication that the objectives of the workshop have been met so far as participants are now able to evaluate drug dossiers, hundreds of which have been done since 2009 to date and a total of four GMP inspections were carried out in 2010”.

Concluding, Mr. Boateng commented that “if this trend is kept, the Pharmacy Board will be able to ensure that only good drugs find their way into the registered market in the country”.

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