Antibiotics Cannot Be Sold Without Medical Prescription

Bhubaneswar: The antibiotics cannot be sold without a medical prescription, said Odisha Drugs Controller Ashok Kumar Patra. “If any druggist is found selling antibiotics without prescription, will be served a showcause notice and action will be taken as per the provisions under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act. If required, licence of the medicine store can be suspended,” he warned.

The Central government has directed medical practitioners to mention the reason while prescribing antibiotics to patients, the Drugs Controller said. There are 551 drugs mentioned in Schedule H to the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules. As many as 47 antibiotic drugs are specified in Schedule H1. As per the rules, the sale of drugs mentioned in Schedule H1 should be recorded in a separate register. In violation of the rule, a showcause notice will be issued to the concerned druggist/chemist. Although a few medicines can be sold without a prescription, the Drugs Inspectors are monitoring this, he said.

Speaking over the directive by the Drugs Controller on mentioning the cause for prescribing antibiotics by the doctors, Director of Health Services, Odisha, Dr. Bijay Kumar Mohapatra said that there are rules in this regard.

“In view of the global rise in antibiotic resistance that poses a significant threat, the Centre has appealed for appropriate use of antibiotics against diseases. Antibiotics should be prescribed wherever they are needed. The antibiotics can be appropriately used if its reason will be clear like mentioning suggestions for diagnosis on the prescription. In fact, no medicine should be sold without prescription. However, few drugs are sold to patients without prescription at the medicine stores. Such practice should be regulated, or else, some diseases like Noncommunicable and Zoonotic are going to pose a big threat like Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR). The sensitivity of the disease has to be understood,” he said asking the doctors to mention the reason for writing antibiotics for the patients.

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