Kenya’s Health Ministry has officially launched an initiative aimed at safeguarding the country’s lucrative pharmaceutical goods and technology sector.
The government department has unveiled a drive known as the Rapid Result Initiative (RRI) on Post Marketing Surveillance (PMS) of medicines and medical devices in the Kenyan market.
Launched by the country’s Health Ministry Cabinet Secretary (CS), Sicily Kariuki, Post Marketing Surveillance is the practice of monitoring the safety and quality of medical products after-market authorization. It ensures that products continuously maintain the specifications and characteristics declared during registration.
“We are determined to ensure all the health products in the market are safe for use by Kenyans,” said Dr. Raman Rashid, Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) at the Ministry.
According to some of the latest statistics, Kenya’s market for pharmaceutical products reached $558.5 million in 2014.
In fact, value addition from the industry alone generates around $62 million a year and amounts to 30% of the East African country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
In a bid to ensure the Kenyan public has access to quality, safe and efficacious health products, CS Kariuki launched a Multi-Agency Task Team this week to conduct an RRI over the next 100 days.
And in line with these developments Kenya’s Health Ministry, Pharmacy and Poisons Board, along with the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA) and the country’s National Quality Lab, will work with the multi-agency task team to collect samples from private and public health facilities to ascertain the quality of medicines.
“Post Marketing Surveillance of medicines and medical devices in the Kenyan market is significant to our patients, the public and health service providers,” CS Kariuki explained.
Her Ministry stipulated that PMS is essential for the detection of Sub-standard and Falsified (SF) products. The government agency noted that the process also confirms the registration status of products circulating the market and helps establish effects of storage conditions on the quality and stability of products.
“The public is advised to use the system for reporting suspected poor quality medicines when they come across suspicious products and adverse drug reactions,” CS Kariuki continued.
She added that reports by the public will help the Ministry monitor the quality of pharmaceutical products.