Diabetes Association Cautions Public Against Online Medication
The National Diabetes Association-Ghana (NDAG) has raised an alarm over the sale of some diabetes medications online which is putting the lives of patients at risk.
According to the NDAG, specific ones gaining grounds on social media platforms; “INSUMED” and “DIANOL”, and said to control blood sugar levels, allegedly caused severe complications for diabetic patients.
NDAG President, Elizabeth Esi Denyoh, thus cautioned diabetic patients and the public against purchasing the drugs, entreating relevant stakeholders to immediately step in to address the ‘threat’ and save lives.
Addressing journalists at a news conference in Accra, Mrs. Denyoh raised concerns over how the ‘fake’ drugs got unto the Ghanaian market.
She claimed that attempts have been made by the Association since November last year, to apprehend the culprits behind the sale of the drugs.
“We together with the police and some FDA officials arrested four of the perpetrators last year and they led us to a hide-out at Ashaley Botwe, 5 Paterson Avenue (GCD 022 0146) where they sold lots of other medications to cure other diseases.
Our independent investigations traced the source of the products to an address belonging to a real estate agency in Bulgaria, SPB Realty but it is not even a drug manufacturing company and although the FDA assures that it was investigating the matter, little progress has been made,” she said.
Mrs. Denyoh explained the modus operandi of the culprits as advertising the product on social media platforms like “Facebook” using recommendations of distinguished personalities (some Ghanaian) who have benefitted from using the drug to lure victims.
She said contacts advertised to an attached link for buying the drugs led customers to the NDAG’s website suggesting that the Association endorsed the medications.
“The Association dis-associates itself from the above medications. We have nothing to do with its importation and sale in Ghana and cannot guarantee its efficacy as the information on the product package was even suspicious and not in English but Bulgarian,” she noted.
The president in expressing fear of further consequences on patients and the public if the matter was not addressed immediately called on stakeholders including the Ministry of Health, Ghana Health Service, Pharmacy Council to regulate the sale of medications on social media.
“They need to expedite action on the prosecution of the perpetrators and assist in the education of the public that diabetes is not curable but can only be controlled,” she urged.
Furthermore, Mrs. Denyo implored the public to desist from buying diabetes and hypertensive medication online asking “all who have bought these medication should contact the nearest hospital.”
“Diabetics should continue taking their prescribed medications, eat well, exercise, drink lots of water and check their sugars regularly,” she advised.