Sunday, October 2

Baggage, postal package screening to prevent entry of banned health products

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PUTRAJAYA: The Health Ministry is conducting screening of baggage, and postal and courier packages at all entry points of the country to prevent the entry of unregistered and banned medicines.

Its director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said those coming in from abroad would only be allowed to bring in, as part of their baggage, health products for their own or family member’s use in a quantity not exceeding one person’s consumption for a month.

He said the Control of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulations 1984 stipulated that only importers with import licence were allowed to import the registered products.

“As a general rule, members of the public are not allowed to bring in unregistered medicines through the postal or courier service,” he said in a statement issued here yesterday.

This, he added, was to protect consumers against irresponsible traders who offered medicines and cosmetic products, especially sex stimulants and slimmming products containing banned substances or which required the prescription of medical practitioners, through the websites. Dr Noor Hisham said screening at the country’s entry points would be conducted by the ministry’s pharmacy enforcement officers with the cooperation of the Customs Department and courier agents such as Pos Malaysia.

“These enforcement officers act as technical advisers and will always work together with the Customs and Pos Malaysia officers to ensure the operational procedures and standards are adhered to.”

He said since the Control of Drugs and Cosmetic Regulations 1984 was gazetted, 48,145 types of controlled drugs, health supplements and traditional medicines had been registered.

“This quantity is sufficient for diagnoses, prevention and treatment of various diseases. Hence, the public are advised to use only medicines that are registered with the ministry and to get the advice of medical practitioners or pharmacists before using them,” he said.

For enquiries or complaints with regard to the importation of medicines and cosmetics, the public can call the Pharmacy Enforcement Division at 03-78413200 or any of its branch offices. They can also check on the status of any product via www.pharmacy.gov.my or www.bpfk.gov.my or the free android smart phone application, myHealth. — Bernama