The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has introduced an online reporting system known as the Safety Watch System (SWS) to enable health workers to report on safety issues related to drugs, vaccines and other regulated products to the authority.
The system is to ensure pharmacovigilance and also to improve timely reporting of suspicious food and drugs safety breaches to the FDA, to protect the public from unnecessary harm and ensure public confidence in drugs administered.
Speaking at a training workshop for pharmacists, administrators and disease control officers in Tamale last Wednesday, the Head of Safety Monitoring Department of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), Mr George Sabblah, said the SWS was an easier, faster and friendlier way of reporting drug reaction and advised its patronage by all health officers.
He advised health workers and patients to take advantage of the system to report issues of Adverse Drug Reactions (ADR) with dispatch to the authority for immediate action, which, he said, included safe disposal of the said drug to stop other patients from taking the drug to ensure public safety.
Mr Sabblah said that community pharmacists would be trained under the SWS system to serve as patient safety contact points in the Northern Region and across the country so that patients could go to them to report adverse drug reaction.
He urged patients to take advantage of both the SWS and the community pharmacists when they experienced any adverse drug reaction, adding that patients could also make reports my texting to the shortcode ‘4015’.
Mr Sabblah also said the FDA would introduce pharmacovigilance to the curricula of health schools to facilitate the effective use of the SWS.
He added that institutions such as the University of Ghana, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and Central University College had added it to their curricula.