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Expired drugs seized at hospital

Food and Drug Administration officials seize a consignment of medicines past their expiry date from a medical store, reports G Mohiuddin Jeddy.

india Updated: Aug 20, 2007 00:50 IST
G Mohiuddin Jeddy

Acting on a complaint by the civic chief, Food and Drug Administration officials descended on the medical store of the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) hospital on Saturday night and seized a consignment of medicines.



The seized batch was suspected of containing drugs well past their expiry date.



Municipal Commissioner Vijay Nahata had complained to the FDA after receiving reports that supplies to the hospital from a pharmaceutical company had medicines that were no longer safe to administer.



The midnight raid comes just days after Nahata sealed the medical store earlier this month and ordered an audit of its stock to determine whether it matched the records.



While FDA officials refused to comment on the raid, NMMC Assistant Medical Officer Dr DR Paropkari confirmed the seizure of the medicines.



"We received a complaint that some strips of an antibiotic were past the expiry date, though the pack they were in showed the expiry date was still not over," Paropkari said. "We normally check the pack. The strips inside are expected to conform to the pack's expiry date. That does not seem to have been the case now."



Paropkari said a few strips of an augmenting medicine, an antibiotic supplied by an Amritsar-based firm, were found to have expired.



"While some of the strips conformed to the expiry date on the pack, a few were of older dates. The FDA officials have taken the medicine packets and will be submitting a report to us soon," Paropkari said.



The NMMC hospital in Vashi has attracted much attention in recent days. Earlier in the month, the civic chief had paid a surprise visit to the hospital, sealed the medical store and ordered several inquiries.



Nahata's actions have led to speculation in the hospital of imminent action against some top officials.



"The commissioner suspects medicines meant for the hospital are being siphoned off from the medical store to private pharmacies. There are also reports that the actual stocks and the records differ," a hospital source had said at the time.