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WHO probing Indian cough syrup after 66 children die in Gambia

News Desk || risingbd.com

Published: 12:37, 6 October 2022   Update: 12:39, 6 October 2022
WHO probing Indian cough syrup after 66 children die in Gambia

The World Health Organisation has issued a medical product alert over four cough and cold syrups made by Maiden Pharmaceuticals in India, warning they can be linked to acute kidney injuries and deaths of 66 children in west African nation, The Gambia.

According to reports, the global health body said it is conducting further investigation with the company and regulatory authorities in India.
“Laboratory analysis of samples of each of the four products confirms that they contain unacceptable amounts of diethylene glycol and ethylene glycol as contaminants,” the WHO said.

Addressing a press conference, WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that while the contaminated products have so far only been detected in the Gambia, they may have been distributed to other countries,” said at a press conference on Wednesday.

Tedros said that WHO was also “conducting further investigation with the company and regulatory authorities in India”.

According to the medical product alert issued by WHO, the four products are Promethazine Oral Solution, Kofexmalin Baby Cough Syrup, Makoff Baby Cough Syrup and Magrip N Cold Syrup.

The Gambia’s health ministry asked hospitals last month to stop using a syrup paracetamol, pending the outcome of an investigation, after at least 28 children died of kidney failure.

The WHO said that information received from India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation indicated that the manufacturer had only supplied the contaminated medications to The Gambia.

“However, the supply of these products through informal or unregulated markets to other countries in Africa, cannot be ruled out,” the UN agency said in an email.
 

Dhaka/Mukul