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10,519 injections available for virus patients, court informed

Lahore

July 7, 2020

LAHORE:The Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (Drap) has informed the Lahore High Court that at present there are 10,519 Actemra injections available in the country to be used for Covid-19 patients.

In a report filed to a petition questioning shortage of the lifesaving injection, the authority stated that before the pandemic the consumption of Actemra injection was 400 per month in the country and sufficient stock was available. However, it said, after the pandemic hit the country the stock was consumed very fast, which led to shortage.

The Drap took up the matter with the medicine marketing company, M/s Roche, and directed it to make the injection available in the country for Covid-19 patients The authority stated that 2,500 vials of the Actemra were imported in May 2020; 8,301 in start of June and 10,000 in mid of June while another 5,000 vials are under process.

“At present, 10,519 vials of the injection are available in the stock and Drap is highly vigilant on the availability,” the report added. It pointed out that National Task Force had been activated against all hoarders, mafias and stockers so that the injection could not be sold in black market. It said the injections were being directly supplied on the Drap approved price to the patients on being prescribed by the physicians.

Justice Sajid Mehmood Sethi is set to hear the petition on Tuesday (today). Judicial Activism Panel's chairman Advocate Azhar Siddique had filed the petition pleading that the virus had been spreading rapidly in the country but the prices of masks and other necessary items had skyrocketed. He said the price of one packet of Chloroquine tablet reached Rs3,000 while lifesaving injection Actemra’s price had gone up to Rs1 million. The petitioner argued that the Drap failed to control the prices of these items and requested the court to take action against the responsible and bring the price of these essential drugs and item to affordable level.