| Wani Roslan |
THE Minister of Health yesterday warned against the medicines sold through social media, cautioning that some of them do not meet the required standards and can harm the users.
Pehin Orang Kaya Johan Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Adanan bin Begawan Pehin Siraja Khatib Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Mohd Yusof, the Minister of Health, urged the public to be vigilant and not to be
easily influenced by attractive advertisements which promote medicines on social media.
Speaking at the launching of Pharmacy Open Day and Roadshow, which was held at the Al-‘Afiah Hall of the Ministry of Health (MoH), the minister said that the MoH’s Department of Pharmaceutical Services is regularly monitoring the medicines used in hospitals, health centres and clinics as well as sold in the market.
The measures are aimed at ensuring that the use of medicine is in line with international best practices and health standards on quality, security and effectiveness, he said.
He welcomed initiatives such as the roadshow to caution the public against arbitrary use of medicine without knowing its source to avoid negative health effects.
To ensure that all pharmaceutical professionals in the country perform their duties professionally and ethically, they are required to register with Brunei Darussalam Pharmacy Board under the Registration of Pharmacists Order, he said.
The minister said citizens and residents of Brunei Darussalam should be thankful to the Government of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam for allocating millions of dollars annually on medicines and vaccines to treat patients.
“In the year 2013 to March 2014, the government spent a total of B$59.8 million for the supply of medicines and vaccines,” he said.
However, he noted that some patients are not taking their medication according to their doctor’s prescription, which worsens their condition. This becomes a burden to the patients’ families and the country as they require intensive and prolonged treatment which incurs additional costs.
He also congratulated the Department of Pharmaceutical Services for formulating the Brunei Darussalam National Medicines Policy (BDNMP) which aims to strengthen the role of the MoH in protecting public health with the use of high quality and effective medicines.
The policy is also used as a framework for the coordination of pharmaceutical services in order to be dynamic as well as responsive to the constant changes in the global scenario and technology.