Sat | Dec 2, 2023

Jamaicans urged not to buy prescription drugs from non-registered sources

Published:Thursday | February 2, 2023 | 4:39 PM
Immediate Past President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Jamaica, Dr Ernestine Watson. - Contributed photo.

The Pharmaceutical Society of Jamaica (PSJ) is appealing to Jamaicans not to source prescription drugs from questionable, non-registered sources.

In an interview with JIS News, PSJ immediate past president, Dr Ernestine Watson, explained that the association is concerned about the sale of counterfeit drugs, which is a major issue in Jamaica, and that the organisation takes the matter very seriously.

“This is why you should go to a pharmacy to fill your prescription. We want to discourage persons from getting medication on the streets, buying it from sources that are not legal,” she said.

“We want persons to be aware that not all drugs are good for you. When you need your medication, the Ministry of Health and Wellness, through the National Health Fund, gives us affordable drugs, and these are available through registered pharmacies,” Watson added.

She reiterated that all places where prescription drugs are sold must be registered with the Pharmacy Council of Jamaica, noting that there is an ongoing registration process and that pharmacies and pharmacists are required to renew their registration annually.

“Registration runs from April 1 to March 31 the following year. After successful initial registration, that registration needs to be renewed on an annual basis,” Watson said.

The former PSJ head also pointed out that the place that is designated to sell drugs must be manned by a registered pharmacist whose licence has to be renewed on an annual basis.

Watson emphasised that it is a legal requirement for the licence to be displayed at the place where pharmaceuticals are sold, so if a patient goes to a pharmacy and the licence is not on display, “it is your right and in the interest of your health to ask to see the licence of the pharmacy and the pharmacist”.

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