SON harps on standards for pharmaceutical products
Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Mallam Farouk Salim, has said that manufacturers of pharmaceutical products need to strengthen the industry by developing and adopting appropriate standards.
This, he said, will enhance economic prosperity now and in the long-run.
Salim made those assertions during a public lecture at Igbinedion University, Okada in Edo State, stressing the importance of standards for economic growth and survival of a society.
Speaking on the theme, ‘Impact of Standards on Practice of the Pharmacy Profession’, he emphasised that pharmaceutical sector has zero tolerance for error, as such, standards are essential in this sector.
His explanation :
“Standards are crucial and can enhance investments in trade within the healthcare industry in Africa, as shown in African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).
Therefore, SON is exploring existing international, regional, as well as national standards to meet up with the challenges facing African trade, which includes the pharmaceutical sector.”
He informed :
“As a member of African Organisation for Standardisation, SON is actively involved in harmonisation of a number of African pharmaceutical standards. These include ARSO/TC 78 for medical devices and equipment; TC 80 for pharmaceutical and medical products, as well as TC 82 for African Traditional Medicine”.
According to him, in line with World Health Organisation (WHO), Traditional Medicine Strategy 2014-2023 aims at formulating national policies. SON in collaboration with ARSO has developed over 10 standards on African Traditional Medicine for use in Nigeria.
He went on :
“The objective of Nigeria Pharmaceutical Industry to provide 60 percent of pharmaceutical products consumed in West African countries is largely dependent on regulatory requirements for marketing authorisation.
“So, to effectively deliver on its mandate and promote the required standards for safety of goods and services in the country, SON follows a well planned procedure for establishing standards.
“Standards are also applied in the pharmaceutical industry, which is important to ensure the strength of active ingredient in quality and purity of drugs. This also ensures safe and effective products for patients. It forms the basis for regulatory requirements on industrial practice to ensure quality in the entire production and distribution chain of drugs.”
More so, Salim made known the readiness of SON to always support pharmaceutical industry with relevant standards, information on international best practice required to overcome technical barriers to trade.
He reaffirmed the commitment to work with relevant authorities like National Agency for Food, Drug, Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and other relevant agencies for approval of more standards for traditional medicine.