July 21, 2024

Authorities crack down on non-compliant medical shops in Bandipora

Authorities crack down on non-compliant medical shops in Bandipora

Close 18 establishments for failing to keep computerized bills, install CCTV cameras, meet drug regulations

Waris Fayaz

Bandipora, Feb 09 (KNO): Authorities in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district have closed at least 18 medical shops which failed to adhere to directives regarding the maintenance of records for narcotics and psychotropic drugs, as well as the implementation of a computerized billing system.

An official from the drug control department, speaking to the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), said due to non-compliance with the crucial directives, they have closed down at least 18 medical shops. The crackdown comes as part of the ongoing drive to regulate the sale and distribution of drugs in the region, he said.

Expressing deep concern over the persistent non-compliance with regulations aimed at curbing the drug menace, the official said the closure of these medical shops is a necessary step to ensure strict adherence to established protocols. “Earlier, we also sealed several unlicensed shops and we will continue to take stringent measures to maintain the integrity of our regulatory framework,” he added.

The Jammu & Kashmir administration in March 2023 directed the chemists and pharmacy shops to maintain the record for each Nrx medicine dispensed and install CCTV surveillance cameras in their stores on a priority basis — which will monitor the sale of prescription drugs and act as a deterrent for illegal activities.

“Currently, 97 percent of medical shops in Bandipora district are equipped with CCTV surveillance cameras — a crucial measure in ensuring transparency and monitoring. The remaining 3 percent in far-flung areas will soon be covered under this initiative,” the official said.

Regarding computerized billing systems, the official said that over 50 percent of medical shops in the district have adopted this technology, with a gradual increase in adoption observed. Despite consistent advisories, some shops are yet to comply, and the official urged them to expedite the adoption process.

“Over the last several months, we have consistently advised and urged them to follow the prescribed orders. We encourage all remaining shops to expedite this adaptation,” he added.

The official further said that they are taking the implementation seriously, as it serves as a significant curb for drug menaces and those establishments that are still yet to adopt this system must do it at any cost.

“We won’t tolerate drug misuse and will take stringent action against violators,” the official said—(KNO)

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