The minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire has expressed the inability of Nigeria to meet the needs of simple medical apparatus such as face masks, surgical gloves, plaster, cotton bandage and other related items, adding that the issues should be addressed holistically.
The minister, who declared this while inaugurating the Governing Council of the PCN in Abuja, urged the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN) on meeting the present reality brought about by the COVID- 19 pandemic.
He therefore, tasked the pharmaceutical sector on the production of pharmaceutical raw materials (both excipients and Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients).
“The council should also refocus the various aspects of the profession to meet up with the realities of today; the COVID-19 Pandemic has brought to fore the vulnerability of the nation in the area of medicine security”.
“It is therefore paramount that the profession of pharmacy in Nigeria immediately starts to think of new ways of doing things; a situation where the focus is on importation of finished products and compounding of raw materials is clearly not acceptable”.
“Strategies must be developed to utilise local resources for the production of pharmaceutical raw materials, (both excipients and Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients). Our maize, yam, cassava, fruits and many others that go into waste due to poor storage need to be put into meaningful use for the pharmaceutical industry; the nation’s vast petroleum resources need to be also exploited”.
“Players in the profession and pharmaceutical industry need to think of bigger things, they must dream dreams and build real pharmaceutical entities that will meet the expectation of the nation”.
“Entrepreneurs need to pool resources in order to be strong and big enough to be able to dabble into the very competitive global market as experience from the Europe and America clearly showed that this is the way forward. The PCN Council should make efforts to bring all players in the industry together.”