In a move to combat illegal pharmaceutical practices, the Pharmacy and Poisons Board (PPB) has published a comprehensive list of licensed pharmacies across the country on its website.

This action follows a recent crackdown on unauthorized outlets in collaboration with the National Drug Regulatory Authority and the Ministry of Health, aimed at curbing the theft of medical supplies from government facilities.

The joint operation, conducted with the assistance of the National Police Service on May 13, targeted illicit entities dispensing medications without the required PPB licenses. The PPB revealed that public hospitals had been facing shortages of essential drugs due to the diversion of supplies to unlicensed private facilities.

In light of these findings, the government urged citizens to only procure medical products from authorized outlets to mitigate health risks. The list of approved pharmaceutical stores is now accessible on the PPB’s website, with a recommendation for individuals to verify the legitimacy of pharmacies before making purchases.

Following the crackdown, 35 individuals were apprehended, and 50 premises were closed down, with seized medicines earmarked as evidence for legal proceedings. Those found culpable will be subject to severe penalties under existing laws. PPB spokesperson Kaluai emphasized, “Our ongoing initiatives are vital in safeguarding public health.”

This development comes in the wake of a prior warning issued by the PPB on April 11, cautioning against the purchase of a cough syrup recalled by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) of Nigeria due to its toxic content of diethylene glycol, posing serious health risks, including potential fatalities.