1st May 2017 09:05:PM Editorials
Eastern Sentinel Arunachal News


A student union recently alleged the Directorate of Health Services (DHS), Naharlagun for supplying medicines with short term expiry dates in huge quantities across the state. It alleged that altogether 10 lakh medicines are now in hospital storerooms of three districts—East Siang, Siang and Upper Siang. Though shocking, the allegation warrants a probe and response from the DHS as supply of ‘expired’ medicines is not new news and often discussed among the common man.

The health sector in the state is in the doldrums despite promises of priority and transformation by successive governments. Truth is, the metamorphosis of this crucial sector is not possible by simply engaging in “rhetoric” and skimming through the surface. Most government hospitals run without supply of surgical hand gloves, disposable syringe and life saving drugs, the bare essentials. However, the issue of expiry medicine is a cause of greater concern; it is a racket thriving right under the noses of the authorities. The condition is so grim that PHCs and CHCs cannot even supply medicines for common illness and patients are forced to procure the same from the market.  

Looking to make profits, often medicines with short expiry span are procured by authorities from manufacturers, who are looking for an opportune moment to dump them at cheaper rates. When these medicines finally end up in heath centres they are left with only weeks of usage time or are well above the expiry date. Often, despite inputs and suggestions, certain medicines are procured in view of the other perks.

Spurious medicine is also a flourishing business and Arunachal with its rudimentary health infrastructure is a haven for such unscrupulous dealings.Adding to the woes is the circulation of post-dated medicines which has a drop in potency and even harmful is the formation of toxic metabolites.

A few years ago, at least 500 children took ill and a few deaths were reported after Vitamin A shots were given to thousands of children in neighbouring Assam, suspected to have been caused by contaminated and outdated vaccines.

The state government must wake up while there is still time and strictly monitor the situation before tragedy strikes.

Kenter Joya Riba

(Managing Editor)
      She is a graduate in Science with post graduation in Sociology from University of Pune. She has been in the media industry for nearly a decade. Before turning to print business, she has been associated with radio and television.
Email: kenterjoyaz@easternsentinel.in / editoreasternsentinel@gmail.com
Phone: 0360-2212313

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