15 October 2018
Ministry of Health and Child Care is calling upon members of the public to desist from buying medication from unauthorised sellers.
In a statement, the Ministry pointed out that there is serious risk in acquiring medicine from bogus suppliers as the medication could be fake.
“The Ministry is urging members of the public to avoid buying medicines from the street or online vendors, as these medicines will not have undergone the quality product assessment by the Medicines Control Authority of Zimbabwe.
“Chances are high that the medicines could be fake, sub-standard or contain no active ingredient at all,” reads part of the statement.
The potential harm of buying from the street far outweighs any potential benefit, if any.
With regards to panic buying, the Ministry also urged the public to avoid unnecessary hoarding since the challenge of shortages are being attended to.
“Following price distortions for services and medicines in the health sector the Ministry appeals for calm among the various players including health practitioners, the pharmaceutical industry and the general public during this period.
“It is critical to note that the supply chain for medicines has a number of players that is manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers and has been operating at below optimum levels with credit facilities withdrawn due to unavailability of forex to pay for prior orders.
“During this time, the Ministry urges members of the public not to panic and avoid unnecessary hoarding of medicines.”
The Ministry has also assured the relevant players in the Ministry and the general public that there will be an injection of foreign currency into the sector to promote an ease in doing business.
“The Government has started mobilising foreign currency to fund the importation of raw materials and medicines.
“It is acknowledged there is limited forex in the country and the health sector has not been spared.
The RBZ Governor has been engaged for foreign currency allocations to the health sector.
The goal is to ensure availability and access to health services by citizens, without compromising the sustainability of service providers, pharmaceutical manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers.
“The Ministry further advises players in the health sector that Government is committed to resourcing the industry and the RBZ has, in response, released an initial $6.7 million to the pharmaceutical industry with another tranche promised on Friday 12 October 2018.
“We note the strong plea by stakeholders for Government to move swiftly to curb the parallel market in order to bring sanity back to the medical industry and avoid distortions in the pricing of services and medicines for the good of patients.
“Government would like to thank all responsive stakeholders and looks forward to stabilise and improve health services provision.”