Continuation of medical advertisement, unrealistic and hazardous to health by private sector is not acceptable to the Ministry of Public Health

Press Release - Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan

Kabul, 03 Jan, 2009: Recently MoPH [Ministry of Public Health] has intensified its efforts in auditing and monitoring of quality health services and quality drugs both in public and private sectors. Hundred tons of expired, low quality and illegal drugs were collected from borders and markets and were discarded. Hundreds of pharmacies were closed due to violation. Hundreds of private doctors clinics and tens of private health facilities were closed due to sub-standard health services and violation of health laws and regulations.

Already communicated to the public through media that advertisements of health services and drugs by private sector must be reviewed by MoPH and after a formal permission by the MoPH to be published and broadcasted in print and broadcast media.

"MoPH is proud of itself that it has expanded the coverage of health services delivery through private health sector. This is a good opportunity to private health sector and also to our public. However, MoPH has also its concerns over the quality of health services and drugs" said Dr. S.M. Amin Fatimie, the Minister of Public Health of Afghanistan. He also added: "Advertisement of private clinics and hospitals in Afghanistan for promotion of special drugs and special health services, without prior permission of MoPH are prohibited and MoPH for protection and safety of all Afghans has decided to ensure that all medical advertisements are in accordance with the medical ethics, standards of World Health Organization and the Ministry of Public Health of Afghanistan. In this regard MoPH tasks a special board to organize and guide the medical advertisement of private sector".

Afghanistan as member of World Health Organization Board, is determined to safeguard the physical, social and psychological health condition of all afghans from the complications of low quality and illegal drugs and hazards of low quality health services. MoPH in close collaboration with the Ministry of Information and Culture is developing a scheme to preempt dissemination of wrong and unrealistic information through medical advertisement so that Afghans relieved from confusions and their health could be protected from adverse effects and adverse events of wrong medication and treatment.

MoPH Afghanistan is indebted to many individuals and health stakeholders, especially Afghan families and elders, European Commission, UNICEF, WHO, the World Bank, USAID, Rotary International, CIDA, Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI Alliance) and JICA.

Ministry of Public Health delivers health services impartially and without any form of discrimination to the needy people of Afghanistan in all corners of the country and requests all parties to respect this policy and support health care providers to fulfill this noble job.

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