Thursday, January 26, 2012

Stiffer penalties for sale of unregistered medicine

Liow Tiong Lai
Pahang Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob (2nd from right) Health Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai (2nd from left) give a go at calligraphy at the CNY Open House organised by the Kuantan Tionghua societies in Kuantan.

The Health Ministry is considering the proposal of stiffer penalties, such as imprisonment, for those found guilty of selling unregistered medicine which endangered the public, said its minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai.

The ministry is amending several laws related to acts governing the sector, to protect consumers and take sterner action against those who breach regulations, he said.

"We're considering a prison sentence because penalties and compounds don't seem to be working," he said after visiting China Press reporter Chow Siew Chin, 26, who was robbed by an armed man near her office here, on Jan 24.

"Such medicine can be detrimental to the public and the law would send a warning message to people that they cannot simply sell unregistered medicine as they liked," he emphasised.

Among the acts involved are Registration of Pharmacists Act 1951, Sale of Drugs Act 1952, Poisons Act, and Medicine (Advertisement and Sale) Act 1956.

He added that the amendments would be tabled in Parliament during the March sitting.

On another development, Liow said the 1Malaysia Clinic service was becoming more popular throughout the country, including Pahang.

The ministry would add five more clinics in the state, bringing the total to 12, to accomodate the number of patients who turned up daily, he said.

"We have 50 clinics nation wide and RM10 million has been allocated for the additional five in Pahang," said Liow.

During his visit, Liow motivated Chow with words of encouragement for her recovery and presented her with a personal contribution.

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