Gambia on Thursday urgently recalled the four Indian-manufactured cough syrups linked to the deaths of 66 children in the country after the World Health Organization issued an alert, reported the Associated Press.
On Wednesday, the World Health Organization had issued an alert against the four contaminated medicines – Promethazine Oral Solution, Kofexmalin Baby Cough Syrup, Makoff Baby Cough Syrup and Magrip N Cold Syrup – manufactured by Haryana-based Maiden Pharmaceuticals Limited.
The global health body had said that the medicines were potentially linked with cases of “acute kidney injuries” that has resulted in the deaths of over 60 children in the west African country.
On Thursday, Gambia launched the campaign to remove the cough and cold syrups that are allegedly responsible for the deaths, reported AP.
Meanwhile, India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said in a statement that an inquiry by the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation has shown that the medicines are manufactured for export purposes only.
The ministry said that it was investigating the matter and also providing technical assistance to Gambia.
“It is a usual practice that the importing country tests these imported products on quality parameters, and satisfies itself as to the quality of the products before the importing country decides to release such products for usage in the country,” the statement said.
The ministry added that samples of the medicines have been sent for testing to the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation laboratory in Chandigarh and that the results are awaited.
On Wednesday, the global health body had said that the four contaminated medicines have only been detected in Gambia for now but they may have been distributed to other countries as well. It has recommended all countries to detect and remove the products from circulation to prevent further harm to patients.