ISLAMABAD: Federal Health Secretary has advised the citizens to ask for Paracetamol instead of Panadol from medical stores, ARY News reported on Thursday.
The federal health secretary gave the suggestion while attending the meeting of the Standing Committee of the National Assembly (NA) on National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination.
The meeting of the NA body on health was held under the chairmanship of Afzal Dhandla which was attended by MNAs Nisar Ahmed Cheema, Dr Samina Matloob, Ms Zahra Wadood Fatime, Dr Darshan, Mr Mahesh Kumar Malani, Ms Shamsun Nisa, Dr Shazia Sobia Aslam Soomro, Mr Ramesh Lal, Mr James Iqbal, Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, Special Secretary Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, CEOs of Islamabad HealthCare Regulatory Authority and Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan, Registrar Pakistan Nursing Council and other officers of the concerned departments.
The Standing Committee on National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination directed the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) to ensure an ample supply of paracetamol and anti-snake venom throughout the country, especially in the flood-affected areas.
The committee directed penal action for all those who are either involved in hoarding or discontinuing production of the paracetamol.
The committee was apprised that the pharmaceutical sector has demanded for increase in the price of paracetamol, however, its request was rejected by the federal cabinet.
The DRAP CEO apprised that punitive action had been initiated against the concerned.
The Special Secretary of the Health Ministry apprised a vigilant eye on the provision of medicines, especially in flood-affected areas. He apprised that the government had already received an ample supply of paracetamol in relief from the foreign governments.
Dr Shazia Sobia Aslam Soomro said that there is a need to spread awareness about Paracetamol and citizens should ask for Paracetamol instead of Panadol as Paracetamol is a formula and Panadol is a specific brand.
DRAP CEO Dr Asim Rauf 85 per cent of paracetamol’s raw material is produced locally, while 15 per cent is imported, and paracetamol is sold at different prices in pharmacies.
The NA body also expressed its annoyance at the consecutive absence of Federal Health Minister Abdul Qadir Patel and the health secretary from the standing committee’s meetings.
The NA standing committee on health decided to convene a special meeting on the shortage of Panadol in the country.