THE Medicines Control Authority of Zimbabwe (MCAZ) has raised a red flag over what it deemed spurious advertisements on print, TV and radio media purporting to treat life threatening conditions.
By Kudakwashe Pembere
In a circular issued on Saturday, MCAZ Director General Ms Gugu Mahlangu dissuaded the media from advertising medicines for about 30 medical conditions.
“In implementing the Medicines and Allied Substances Control Act, [Chapter 15.03] and its regulations it has come to the attention of the Authority that some media, printing and publishing houses are advertising a variety of medicines without the Authority’s approval
“The Authority further noted that there are newspaper articles with misleading information which promote the sale of medicines especially for treatment of terminal and life threatening conditions,” she said.
Added Ms Mahlangu, “The presentation and information in these articles draws the attention of the public to the sale of these medicines, the safety, quality and efficacy of which has not been evaluated by the Authority.”
The circular damned the articles as unacceptable and illegal unless approved by the Authority.
“Media, printing and publishing houses are therefore requested to take note of and comply with the above provisions as advertising any medicine without the Authority’s approval is an offence.
“We draw your attention to Section 106 of the Medicines and Allied Substances Control (General) Regulations, SI 150 of 1991 which provides for penalties for the contraventions,” she said.
Diseases mentioned in the circular include Alcoholism, Appendicitis, Arteriosclerosis, Cardiovascular disease, Cataract, Diabetes, Hernia Kidney stone, Pneumonia, Prostate gland disorder, Epilepsy, Gallstones , Gangrene, Glaucoma, Hypertension, Hypotension, Infantile diarrhea, Plague, Pleurisy,. Locomotor or any ataxia, Meningitis (all types),Nephritis, Osteoarthritis, Sexually transmitted disease, Pneumoconiosis, Multiple Sclerosis,Rheumatic fever, Rheumatoid arthritis, Malignant disease, Thrombosis, Tuberculosis, Poliomyelitis and Parkinson’s disease