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Health Ministry asks states to ensure no shortage of Oxytocin from Sep 1

Health Ministry asks states to ensure no shortage of Oxytocin from Sep 1

PTI Last Updated at 06 Aug 2018, 20:08 IST India

With the government restricting the manufacture of Oxytocin formulations for domestic use to just one public sector company from September 1, the Health Ministry today asked state governments and Union Territories to ensure there is no shortage of the drug after the ban comes into force.

State-owned Karnataka Antibiotics Pvt Ltd (KAPL) will be the only company to manufacture and distribute Oxytocin in India from September 1.

The meeting, in which KAPL also participated, focused on various issues related to regulation of Oxytocin, including the status of preparedness of state governments for implementing the amended rules in regard to the drug's manufacture, distribution and sale.

"The video conference also assessed the stock of Oxytocin in states to ensure that there is no shortage after the restriction order on its manufacture for domestic use comes into effect from September 1," the ministry said in a statement.

The states have been asked to ensure availability of Oxytocin injection in all government hospitals and clinics by placing purchase orders with KAPL.

"As Oxytocin injection is a lifesaving drug and now with its restricted manufacture and sale through KAPL, all procurement agencies of state governments shall ensure sufficient stocks are available at any given point of time," the statement said.

Oxytocin is a naturally-occurring hormone that causes uterine contractions during labour and helps new mothers lactate.

But its misuse is widespread in the dairy industry where livestock are injected with oxytocin to make them release milk at a time convenient to farmers. The hormone is also used to increase the size of vegetables such as pumpkins, watermelons, brinjals, gourds and cucumbers.

The government has also banned the import of oxytocin and its formulations, besides bringing in some more regulations on the manufacture and sale of the controversial hormone.

A health official emphasised that all states keep a vigil on any artificial shortage of Oxytocin injection.

State authorities were also asked to ensure availability of Oxytocin injection in all government hospitals by placing orders with KAPL and also have meeting with all stakeholders such as the Federation of Obstetric and Gynaecological Societies of India, the Indian Medical Association, the Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana to ensure its availability in all private clinics also.

The states have been advised to assess their requirement of the drug and to place the orders with state-owned company in time.

Most states indicated that they have sufficient stock, and would also be placing orders to meet the requirement of government hospitals.

The KAPL has requested states to place their orders in advance for bulk procurement.

KAPL has also assured that they have the required manufacturing capacity. It also assured to maintain the adequate quality of the drugs.

The state-owned company has started a 24-hour helpline number 080-23577595 and also assured that it shall be revising its bulk purchase pricing.

The government also asked the states to start awareness campaigns about the government notification on restricting the manufacture and sale of Oxytocin to KAPL.

It has asked KAPL to ensure a robust supply chain to prevent stock outs.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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