The ministry of commerce has again enforced the ban on anti-malaria drugs to stock them in case of their possible use to treat COVID-19 patients.
The ban imposed with immediate effect will remain in force until further decision on COVID-19 by the National Coordination Committee (NCC), under SRO297 of 2020 released here by the Ministry of Commerce on Friday.
There has been an ambiguity between the commerce division and the national health ministry about allowing the export of or impose a ban on the anti-malaria medicines.
About a month ago, US President Donald Trump said that the FDA had approved the use of Chloroquine to treat COVID-19. Due to which the demand for anti-malaria drugs gained importance, however, in a recent statement FDA clearly said that it has not approved any such use of Chloroquine in the treatment of coronavirus.
As per the official data, almost 20 companies are manufacturing anti-malaria drugs in the country. Moreover, to limit the use of anti-malaria drugs in the domestic market, Drap has already told medical stores to only sell the medicines on prescriptions from physicians.
Drap released a statement that said, “The Central Licensing Board of Drap has approved local manufacturing of Chloroquine Phosphate-Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API). Now Chloroquine API can be manufactured indigenously to meet the requirement of those pharmaceutical companies that prepare Chloroquine phosphate tablets, injections, and syrups.”