The Ministry of Health has ordered the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) to suspend the registration, importation
and manufacturing of cough syrups containing codeine with immediate effect .
Launching the reviewed edition of the National Medicines Policy in Accra yesterday (Friday, June 22, 2018), the Minister of Health,
“My full statement on these directives will come shortly as the ministry is taking steps to work with the office of the Attorney-General for appropriate executive instruments to be issued on these actions,” he said.
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This is the third time the National Medicines Policy has been reviewed. The first policy document was adopted in 1999 and was reviewed in 2004 and 2017.
The review is to ensure that the policy better responds to the pharmaceutical needs of the country by addressing gaps in the previous editions, such as implementation frameworks, alignment to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), among other gaps.
The overall goal of the policy is to ensure universal, equitable and sustainable access to priority, efficacious and safe medicines, as well as health technologies of acceptable quality for all Ghanaians and all resident non-Ghanaians.
The policy has been revised to provide direction and guidance to all stakeholders in the pharmaceutical sector in Ghana.
The revision has been informed by the need to strengthen pharmaceutical systems as a key component of health systems to meet the ever-changing health needs of the population.
The policy review is driven by the government's medium-term development strategy as outlined by the National Development Planning Commission and the Health Sector Medium-Term Strategy by the World Health Organisation’s (WHO's) ) guidelines for drug policy development.
The policy has five main clusters. They are
He said the prices of pharmaceuticals remained a big challenge for the government and, therefore, stakeholders were expecting that the impact of the agreement on the prices of pharmaceuticals would be felt very soon.
To ensure that pharmaceutical products were affordable, the health minister said the government promised in its manifesto in the run-up to the 2016 general election, to remove
“This action, the government believes, should lead to the reduction of prices since VAT forms 40
Second Lady’s remarks
In her remarks to officially inaugurate the third edition of the policy, the Second Lady,
The World Health Organisation’s Country Representative,
He said the WHO applauded such a policy because of its ability to improve access to self-efficacious medicines.