The Ministry of Health (MoH) has raised the red flag on a cosmetic product after it was found to be adulterated with undeclared, potent Western medicine.
A test conducted by the Laboratory of Pharmacy Section, Department of Scientific Services, MoH found that NV Nouvelles Visages Nourishment Skin Renewal Treatment (manufacturer Malaysia) contained Hyrodquinone.
The adulterant found in this product can cause adverse effects potentially hazardous to users. Hydroquinone is used in Western prescription medicines to treat skin conditions and is prohibited in skincare cosmetic products under the Medicines (Cosmetic Products) Regulations.
Unsupervised use of Hydroquinone may cause skin hypersensitivity and skin discolouration resulting in gradual darkening of the affected skin area and an increased risk of skin cancer.
The MoH has not issued any approval for the importation for the sale of this products and/or Cosmetic Notification Acknowledgement Letter for the sale of the product. Following the findings, the product is prohibited from being imported and sold in Brunei Darussalam.
Members of the public who have purchased or used the product are advised to discontinue use immediately. They should also consult a medical practitioner if they feel unwell or experience any undesirable reactions as a result of using them.
Individuals involved in the retail of the products (including online retail such as through Facebook, etc) are hereby reminded that it is an offence under the Poisons Act 1956 to sell any product containing any substance controlled under the said Act and the penalty for such an offence upon conviction, is a fine of BND8,000 or six months’ imprisonment.
Furthermore, if a person commits an act that amounts to such a degree of negligence so as to endanger or be likely to endanger human life, then such person shall be guilty of an offence which carries a penalty of a fine of BND16,000 and 12 months’ imprisonment.
It is an offence under the Medicines (Cosmetic Products) Regulations, 2007 to import and market cosmetic products in the local market without a Cosmetic Product Notification Acknowledgement Letter issued by the authority, where the penalty for contravening these regulations upon conviction is a fine not exceeding BND5,000, imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or both.
The MoH calls for public cooperation in reporting to the Compliance and Licensing Section should this product be detected on the market in the Sultanate.
Contact the Compliance and Licensing Section at 2393298 (extension 208), e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org; visit the Compliance and Licensing Section, Department of Pharmaceutical Services’ Building at Kampong Madaras, Mukim Gadong A, or call Darussalam line at 123 for information and communication.