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Content Of Pharmacy Council Of Nigeria Bill The President Is To Sign

Chaos as PCN Bill goes missing before president
Pharmacy council of Nigeria bill
There is pandemonium among pharmacist in Nigeria. They are agitating for the president to sign the pharmacy council of Nigeria bill. All hell was let loss when it was rumoured that the bill is missing.
The bill was written in 2010 and took six months to draft. It took the services of some members of the pharmacist's Council of Nigeria (PCN) and former director of food and drug services of the federal ministry of health (FMH). Others involve are some members of the pharmaceutical society of Nigeria (PSN), federal ministry of justice (FMJ), director of pharmaceutical services from states and the legal department of the federal ministry of health.
Read Also: All About Pharmacists Council of Nigeria
The bill was passed by the lower house after two reading in 2017. It took three reading in the upper chamber before it was passed into the bill as a single bill and not as two. The reason for the combination is that they saw that both bills address the same issue.

Content Of The Pharmacy Council Of Nigeria Bill

The bill was drafted with two sets of persons in mind. It was drafted to protect the public health as we shall see. It also aim at promoting the image of the profession as obtainable in other develop countries as well as some African countries.
The pharmacy council of Nigeria (PCN) [establishment, etc.] bill, 2018 (H.B. 364 & 656) was passed into law in March 2018. It was sponsored by the Senate leader, Ahmed Lawan (Yobe North).
The bill aimed to address some pressing needs of pharmacy practice in Nigeria. It is observed that the pharmacy profession in Nigeria is under threat. This threat is coming from some groups of person and government poor approach to regulating the practice of the profession.
For example, the present bill gives the PCN the power to enforce any of the law of the bill and sanction anyone who fails. The bill also covers new sanctions that meet the current standard. This will prevent some new techniques some people use to bypass the existing law to commit havoc because the law did not cover their offence.
In other to improve the availability of cheap, quality and effective drugs, the pharmacy council of Nigeria bill is pushing for the inclusion of satellite pharmacy practice (SPP). This will encourage the citing of pharmacies in rural areas. This will drive the current number of community pharmacy at 5000 to over 100000 according to the present projection. The only requirement to open a satellite pharmacy is to be a pharmacist with at least 10 years post pharmacy practice not withstanding the primary area of practice. This means that one license can be used to register as a community pharmacy and still work in other sectors.
The above inclusion will also help in achieving another thing. It will help in pushing out unregistered patent medicine dealers out of the country. It is estimated that over a million patent stores operate without registration to operate in that capacity. This is against the 58000 patent medicine registered with the pharmacists council of Nigeria (PCN). Most of the unregistered patent medicines store operators are the major culprit of illegal drug distribution.
Read Also: List Of Pharmacy Association In Nigeria
To this end, the bill includes the law encouraging the introduction of chain distribution of drugs in the country. This is the national drug distribution system. This will curb drug abuse and misuse. If properly regulated, it will encourage local production of drugs which will further boost the economy of the country.

Action By pharmacist In Nigeria

Different stakeholders in various sectors have carried out various actions to push the government to sign the bill. However, the recent brouhaha is about to push all pharmacist in the country into action. There is a circular currently being circulated without a name or signature for the pharmacist to take an action on the 7-05-2019. They are encouraged to shot down services for two hours. This is in response to push the government to take decision now to forestall future problem. Whatever happened to the bill, pharmacist in Nigeria are not taking it likely.
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