The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), has launched a project dubbed "Take Back Unwanted Medicine from Consumers" (TBUM) at its headquarters in Accra. The aim of the project is to take back unused and expired medicines from consumers and dispose them of safely as enshrined in the Public Health Act 2012, Act 851.
Launching the project, the Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Delese Mimi Darko stated that, currently in Ghana, there is a growing trend of large quantities of unused and expired medicines in the hands of consumers which are obtained through prescription and over-the-counter purchases.
Some of these medicines are retained in homes over a long period of time which has the tendency of getting into the hands of curious toddlers and teenagers, as well as the environment.
To address this public health concern, Mrs. Darko stated that there is the need for these medicines to be disposed of safely to reduce its negative and toxic effects on our environment to protect public health and safety.
Quoting the National Drugs Policy, the Chief Executive Officer stated that disposal of medicines shall be undertaken in a manner that protects and preserves the environment and ensures that medicines due for disposal do not find their way into the population for use.
She added that, the TBUM project would be piloted in fifty (50) Community Pharmacy Shops in the Greater Accra Region to take back unwanted medicines from consumers and would eventually be scaled up nationwide.
She further disclosed that, the FDA in collaboration with other agencies shall ensure that suitable measures are instituted for the regular identification, collection and safe disposal of expired medicines and medical waste.
The FDA exists to protect public health by assuring the safety, efficacy and security of human and veterinary drugs, food, biological products, cosmetics, medical devices, household chemical substances, tobacco and the conduct of clinical trials in the country.