"We Did Not Import Substandard Drugs" - Vicdoris Pharmaceuticals

Vicdoris Pharmaceuticals Ltd -- the company at the centre of the importation of Cipro-Dor and Clavo-Dor -- into the country have described as “very misleading” reports that it had imported “substandard” drugs for sale. While conceding that some of the drugs which were recently recalled by the Food and Drugs Board may have gone bad as a result of “bad storage” by clients who serve as retailers for the company, Managing Director of the Vicdoris Pharmaceutical, Mr Victor Attefuah, said “it is unfortunate and misleading” for the media to suggest all the two drugs “are bad.” “We have been in this business for over 20 years and have always supplied good and efficacious medicines,” Mr. Attefuah said in a Citinews interview on Friday. On Thursday, the Food and Drugs Board ordered recall of specific batches of the two China-made antibiotics. The Board in a statement said the recall was necessary because laboratory analysis of samples of the two drugs have concluded they were “substandard.” The Board said patients who are put on the two antibiotics could be at risk, since Cipro-Dor 500 mg with batch number 08C0701 has what it called “quality defects.” Speaking to CitiNews, Victor Attefuah, Managing Director of the Company, the media in publishing news of the recall of the drugs, “misrepresented” the facts that informed the FDB action and in the process “injured the reputation of our company.” “The Publication that came in the papers was misleading. But that is not what the FDB meant; going by the letter they wrote to us.” He went on to read excerpts of the letter, which was dated March 12, 2010 and signed by Dr Stephen K. Opuni, Chief Executive Officer of the Board: “The Food and Drugs Board has ordered the immediate recall of Cipro-Dor 500mg tablets with Batch Number 08C0701 from the Ghanaian market due to some quality defects. Three (3) independent samples of the batch sampled from various parts of the country failed to comply with the USP specification for Assey.” Mr Attefua added: “No where in the letter was it stated that all the two drugs are bad. Instead the Board mentioned a specific batch.” He added: “The products we bring into to the country are first of all registered by the Board after their various tests. Subsequently, anytime we import these products they are tested at the ports before we are allowed to clear and all our drugs passed all those tests.” Mr Attefuah told Citinews it is “misleading” to suggest therefore that all the two drugs are substandard, adding “We are very sure the drugs went bad as a result of bad storage.” He said the Company is in the process of recalling all the drugs and would do an independent investigation to establish the authenticity or otherwise of the FDB’s findings. Meanwhile, Mr. Karikari Boateng, Head of the Laboratory Services Department of the FDB, has confirmed in an interview with CitiNews that the Board indeed granted permit for the importation and sale of the products. He however said the Board has since found out that samples of the drugs were “substandard.” He somewhat agreed with Mr Attefuah’s claims that some of the drugs may have gone bad as a result of “bad storage.” “Maybe they may have a point…because due to climate change these times, the temperatures have been quite excessive. But if the drugs are stored properly under air condition as is stated on the label then this problem should not happen.”