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Jul 26, 2018

Ministry of Health On Top of Meds Recall

Earlier this week, we reported on a common drug that is being voluntarily recalled because the drug contains a chemical that may expose patients to cancer risk.  The drug valsartan is used to control hypertension and to help prevent heart failure, but it’s a contaminant that was included in the manufacturing process that’s poses the cancer risk. The Ministry of Health has called for the precautionary recall – and brands such as Denk Germany, Actavis UK and Teva Pharmaceuticals are being removed by importers and wholesalers. When we caught up with the Director of Health Services Doctor Marvin Manzanero he says that there is no need for patients to fear.

 

Marvin Manzanero

Dr. Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services

“Once we got the alert from the European Agency that deals with pharmaceuticals, we had written to all of the importers of this product because we have a listing and we had done what we call a voluntary recall. We asked them to pull back the product or if they had any medication coming in transit to Belize that they send it back. So, that had started and so it may have been even that when we released it yesterday for the public, that recall may have already been done. Now, I don’t have a particular number because as you note we are doing a voluntary recall that has any particular trade name or generic name that is attached to that. So, we don’t have the total number and as you said it is a voluntary recall that we are having as a precautionary measure if you will.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Do you know if there are patients who may have purchased from the possibly contaminated batch series?”

 

Dr. Marvin Manzanero

“We have been following that particularly and I think it is from the Denk Pharmaceuticals they are trying to track that down because it is from a given time period but I don’t think it went down to the patient level because it was flagged to us before that potential product was coming here. So, we are pretty sure that it isn’t there yet, so it was kind of a precautionary measure that we were taking.”

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