The Pune Division of state Food and Drug Administration (FDA) department has directed chemists to abstain from selling flu medicine without a prescription from a doctor. It has warned chemists of serious punitive action if they are found violating the order.
The move came after government authorities noticed that a large number of suspected COVID-19 patients were treating themselves at home using flu medicine. In such cases, flu symptoms subside in a few days, but reappear with greater intensity in an advanced stage of COVID-19. At such a stage, the recovery becomes relatively difficult.
“It’s been noticed that patients or their relatives are buying flu medicines from chemist shops. These patients can be positive for coronavirus or asymptomatic carrier. They can cause infection to the staff at the retail shop. Hence, those who come to medical shops to buy flu medicine should be asked to produce a prescription from a medical practitioner… Medical shops selling flu medicine without a prescription will face severe action,” said a circular signed by S B Patil, Joint Commissioner, FDA, Pune.
On Tuesday, Pune’s Divisional Commissioner Deepak Mhaisekar appealed to private physicians that if they find COVID-19 symptoms in patients, they should immediately refer them to a public hospital or any of the COVID Care Centres.
There are a total of 19 COVID Care Centres in Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad, including Naidu Hospital, Sassoon General Hospital, Yashwantrao Chavan Hospital, District Hospital Aundh, Bharati Vidyapeeth, D Y Patil Medical College, Bhosari Hospital, KEM Hospital and Sahyadri Hospital.
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