‘Substandard IV fluids’ supplied to hospitals

‘Substandard IV fluids’ supplied to hospitals
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Received no complaint: JKMSCL

SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir Medical Supplies Corporation Limited (JKMSCL) is risking lives of patients by allegedly supplying poor quality intravenous (IV) fluids to tertiary care hospitals of Kashmir, official sources told Kashmir Reader.
The sources said the JKMSCL has failed to withdraw huge stock of the “dubious” IV fluids from the stores of tertiary care hospitals despite receiving unsatisfactory reviews from the doctors and officials associated with Government Medical College (GMC) Srinagar and its associated hospitals.
“The fluids supplied by lesser-known company Haseeb Pharmaceuticals through its distributor Vikrant Life Sciences Pvt Ltd are totally doubtful. The poor quality plastic casing and sterility of the fluids has prompted the doctors to register a complaint and requested the JKMSCL to withdraw the remaining stock. But, officials of the corporation turned deaf ears towards the objection,” a doctor at SMHS Hospital told Kashmir Reader.
He said the poor packaging had raised the risk of contamination of the fluids but no stock was pulled out from any hospital.
JKMSCL faced similar criticism in 2016 also when GMC Srinagar declared the IV fluids supplied to them as ‘non-sterile” after it didn’t conform to Form Fill Seal Techno Logy (FFS Technology), a globally recommended technology to ensure sterilization of pharma products.
“In 2016, the packaging and sterilisation of IV fluids were also found compromised after which GMC had written to JKMSCL seeking their clarification. The Corporation had withdrawn the supply and assured not to supply the poor quality fluids. But, they have repeated the same mistake and sent us poor supply,” a pharmacist at GMC Srinagar said.
Sources said Vikrant Life Sciences had recently supplied truckloads of IV fluids which were found poor in packaging at the arrival only. However, JKMSCL officials allowed the supply after a verbal assurance by the supplier that they won’t repeat the shortcomings in future supplies.
“This is a serious negligence on part of the officials of the Corporation. How can they allow the drugs with questionable quality?” an official said.
General Manager, JKMSCL, Dr Muhammad Iqbal said they haven’t received any written complaint from any hospital so far.
“If any hospital has any grievance about the IV fluids, they should send us written complaint so that we can take action accordingly,” he said.
According to him, the companies JKMSCL has chosen are reputed as they were selected after proper scrutiny as per the set tendering guidelines.
“We cannot compromise on quality because it is related to patient care,” Dr Iqbal said.

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