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(1991; 2 pages)
The Minister of Health of Nigeria, Professor O. Ransome Kuti, spoke with Essential Drugs Monitor editor Ms. Daphne Fresle on the latest developments concerning rational use legislation in his country. Kuti stated that the effectiveness of the essential drugs list, the enforcement of the ban on unnecessary drugs, the increase in quality of available drugs and the increase in drug information for consumers were all areas of concern that led to drug legislation being passed in December 1989. The main objectives of the legislation address these areas of concern. Kuti mentioned that quality control is deficient in Nigeria, and that the Department of Food and Drug Administration has allotted US$2 million to set up quality control facilities to mitigate this problem. Kuti also discussed the acceptance of the legislation by the public and private sectors; doctors support it, but pharmacists do not. He explained that if doctors do not complain, there should be no reasons for pharmacists to complain, and said “drugs are meant for diseases, not sectors”. Kuti emphasized the importance of public education on rational drug use in order for the legislation to succeed. Furthermore, he added that the input and involvement of interested groups is necessary while writing legislation to prevent certain sectors or groups from denouncing new policies. Kuti concludes the interview by outlining the next necessary steps that the programs need to thrive.
Abstract written by M. Tobin, 2013.