451 herbalists in three regions received training
The Authority intensified capacity building for the herbalists in May this year from Goaso, the Ahafo regional capital through the Bono region and ended Friday, August 27 at Kintampo in the Bono East region.
This formed part of the FDA’s vital and pivotal measures to guarantee the safety and efficacy of herbal products for public consumption.
Participants including females and youth comprises of 91 in the Ahafo region, 180 in the Bono region, 69 from Techiman area and 111 from Kintampo, in the Bono East region respectfully and would all receive certificates.
They were taken through topics such as standard operative procedures, personal hygiene, environmental cleanliness, rightful measurements with the right measuring devices and naming of the products.
Also included name of the manufacturer, disease condition, dosage and storage condition, correct labeling, indication of active ingredients and proper packaging to prevent dust and other foreign materials from contamination.
Others topics were safety precautions, location address, telephone, and batch numbers indicated in a required language like English and Twi.
In an interview with newsmen, Madam Akua Amponsaa Owusu, the Director in charge of the Authority for the three regions, said the intention was to train the herbal practitioners to become knowledgeable persons in the industry.
She explained that participants would obtain in-depth knowledge to enhance their ability and skills in the traditional medicinal practices to provide quality products manufacturing and services delivery.
According to her, this would guard against the influx of unregistered and fake Herbal medicinal products into the market to maintain a high-quality standard of the Ghana’s plants medicine.
Mad. Owusu said the FDA’s periodic training to promote industrial best practices would enhance the potency and efficacy of the nation’s Herbal industry for proper treatment of ailments.
That, she added could even help to reduce the government’s expenditure on drug importation for the money saved to fund other equally important developmental projects and speed up national growth.
Mr. Richard Kyeremeh Yeboah, a Senior Regulatory Officer of the FDA, later in an interview with the Ghana News Agency stated the requirements were in accordance with Act 852 of the Public Health Act 2012.
He said defaulters would be liable to pay a minimum fin of 7500 penalty units or serve Court imprisonment.
Mr. Yeboah encouraged that if practitioners obtained the required industrial knowledge, their products could meet international standards.
Mr. Daniel Yaw Nti, also a Senior Regulatory Officer in a related development added participants were sensitized on the need to register their businesses with the Registrar Generals Department and certify their products and services at the FDA.
They were also educated on the importance of acquiring business license from the Traditional Medicine Practice Council (TMPC) for standard improvement.
He therefore entreated beneficiaries of the training to take advantage of the digital technology prevalence to improve on their businesses, adding, that would also help them to be familiar with and understand some does and don’ts in the industry to avoid violations of the law that could consequently lead to arrest and prosecution.
He cautioned them not to forget the adherence to the COVID-19 safety protocols at their various work places to avoid spread of the virus.
Mr. Nti further implored the participants to impact the knowledge acquired on their junior staff to ensure collectively excellent service delivery and sustainability of the herbal industry.
In another interview, Mr. Richmond Agyei of Brenya Herbal Clinic and the chairman of the Ghana National Association of Traditional Healers commended the FDA for the training.
He stated the herbalists were in need of such capacity building programs from regulatory agencies to broadened their knowledges, hence, the event help them improve the quality of their products and services to contribute meaningfully to the nation’s economic growth.
Credit: Christopher Tetteh