Last Updated on October 9, 2020 by The Health Master
As there is no proper competent authority to check the quality of medical devices being supplied in the state by various companies, the state government of Andhra Pradesh (AP) has issued an order notifying all the state drug control officers (DCOs) in the state as medical device officers (MDOs). Soon, all the DCOs will be empowered to check the quality of the medical devices to safeguard the health of the people.
It is also learnt that Govt of Haryana had already notified all DCOs of the state as Medical Device Officer.
The main reason for the state government to take the decision of notifying all the state drug control officers as MDOs is that earlier it has come to the notice of the government that certain medical devices manufacturing companies were supplying not of quality medical devices to various government hospitals across the state and there is no competent authority to check their quality and efficiency of the medical devices.
Taking cognizance of the issue, the state government of Andhra Pradesh has issued a notification notifying all the 67 existing state drug control officers as medical devices officers who are also empowered to check the quality of medical devices.
Informing this, S Ravi Shankar Narayan, Director General of AP DCA said that the state government has issued a GO No.123 dated 5-10-2020 designating officers from the Drug Control Administration (DCA) from the rank of director to drug inspectors as medical device officers. “With the notification of the government designating all the drug control officers as MDOs, they are empowered to check medical devices right from the manufacturing, sale and their usage and maintenance of the quality of the devices,” informed the DG of APDCA.
As the state is registering more than 10,000 COVID-19 cases every day and death toll registering at 80-90 every day in Andhra Pradesh, the demand for medical devices like pulse oximeters, BP checking machines, and other medical devices used in the hospitals and by the people are increasing in the market. Taking advantage of this, many medical devices manufacturers are flooding the markets with not of quality medical devices.
In the recent times, most of the people have faced difficulty as sub-standard quality oximeters flooded the markets causing trouble to patients as their readings were found to be inaccurate. When complaints were filed with the DCA authorities earlier they expressed helplessness to intervene as they were not designated as medical device officers at that point of time. Now once the GO is published in the AP gazette, the designated MDOs will start working under the provisions of the drugs Control Administration, 1940 DCA Rules, 2017 and Drugs Clinical Trials Rules 2019.
With the new order of the state government now the DCA officials will not only keep a check on the quality, price, stocking and distribution of drugs but they will also do similar checks for the medical devices and are now empowered to prosecute those who flout the norms.