Health Minister shuns claims of drugs that cure all ailments

11 Oct 2015 13:20pm
ONGWEDIVA, 11 OCT (NAMPA) – Minister of Health and Social Services Dr Bernard Haufiku has called on medical officers to teach people to avoid misleading information that is disseminated in the media against their medication.
The minister said this in reference to advertisements in especially the print media, advertising drugs that apparently cure all ailments.
Haufiku made the call in a statement presented on his behalf by Dr Naftali Hamata during the second International Symposium on HIV and Tuberculosis (TB) in Namibia held at Ongwediva in the Oshana Region on Friday and Saturday.
“The media is full of information telling the public of wonder drugs which cure virtually every sickness or ailment the public may have,” Haufiku noted.
He said some of the advertisements go to the extent of telling patients to stop using medication issued by hospitals and use only drugs that are not prescribed by a medical doctor.
Haufiku demanded that the people behind the misleading information provide documented evidence to prove their claims.
“Those who claim to have curing agents must have them registered with the Namibian Medicines Regulatory Council,” he said, adding that laws will be enacted to control those who make themselves guilty of such behaviour.
The Health and Social Services Minister wants the community to learn to know that not everything they read in the newspapers or hear on the radio or television is factual.
“Never stop your medication given by a health care provider unless you have side effects, which you must report at the health facility,” Haufiku urged.
He encouraged the medical officials to work together as a team and to focus on the reduction of the spread of TB and HIV infections.
“Let every one of us continue to make a contribution within the team until TB and HIV are defeated,” Haufiku said.
The Ministry of Health and Social Services and Unam School of Medicine hosted the symposium along with their partners. The symposium was aimed at educating participants and sharing best practices on the control of TB/HIV. It was hosted under the theme ‘Eradicating TB and Controlling the HIV Epidemic in Namibia’.
Presentations from renowned international and national experts, as well as local health care workers and managers featured during the two-day symposium.
A number of medical doctors and officials from all over Namibia and elsewhere attended the symposium.