Arbitrary sale of medicines in village shops irks Samanganis – Pajhwok Afghan News

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AIBAK (Pajhwok): A number of residents of rural areas in northern Samangan province have expressed concern about what they say unauthorized sale of medicines in small pharmacies and grocery stores.

They say this problem has long been existed, but no action could be taken against it so far.

Some shopkeepers in remote villages of Samangan sell medicines to the locals arbitrarily and without doctor’s prescription.

Speaking to Pajhwok Afghan News, Ebadullah, a resident of Dalkhki village in Aibak City, said: “It is a matter of concern that medicines are sold by small pharmacies and grocery shops unprofessionally.”

He said no authorized pharmacy existed in some villages and people purchased medicines from shops to meet their needs. He said medicine sold in village shops were not of good quality and even expired.

According to him, these shops keep medicines for a long time and even sell expired drugs. Villagers use the expired medicines unaware of their side effects.

He asked health officials to stop arbitrary sale of medicines.

Mohammadullah Bek, a local representative of Nizar village in Dara-i-Sauf Payeen district, said lack of awareness, lack of access to health clinics and false beliefs were among things why villagers used medicines without doctor’s prescription.

He urged health officials of Samangan to inform the public about the harms of arbitrary use of medicines and build health centres in villlages so residents did not use medicine willfully.

Marzia, a resident of Hazrat Sultan district, also complained about the sale of low-quality medicines in the district and villages.

“My condition deteriorated following continuous use of drugs I bought from a store in the village. When I realized these drugs were not useful, I stopped using them.”

Musa Khan, a community volunteer health worker, said the sale of medicines by shopkeepers had increased the number of deaths among villagers.

“So far, I have referred several patients to health clinics who were infected with various diseases due to the use of medicine without examination,” he added.

Director of Public Health Maulvi Mohibullah Bahari told Pajhwok that no small shop or pharmacy was allowed to sell medicines without a license from the Ministry of Public Health.

He added some vendors secretly sold medicines in remote villages and the Samangan Public Health Department alone could not deal with the challenge.

However, he said the department had taken action in coordination with community health workers against arbitrary sale of medicines.

sa/ma

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