Pharmacy Board Sierra Leone, (PBSL) the sole Drugs and Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency in the Country has for the past six months embarked on building the capacity of its laboratory staff.
This the board sees as a vital arm of the agency in the regulation of drugs, cosmetic and other pharmaceuticals in the Country.
Apart from the series of in-house training done for laboratory and other staff members at the PBSL, the laboratory staff has for the past six months been engaged in successive overseas training; in a bid to building their capacity to meet contemporary standards, marching with the current Ultra-Modern Laboratory equipment the Board operates at the lab at Cline Town, east of Freetown.
In a fact finding visit at the lab at the Jenner Wright Hospital in Cline Town, the Acting Manager at the quality control lab, Mohamed Sesay who has just completed a training course in Mali on development of monographs [a set of medical specifications that help lab technicians identify the level of purity, safety and efficacy in drugs and other pharmaceuticals] on medical and aromatic plants for the African Region, conducted by the International Centre for Scientists (CTI), UNIDO and the Government of Mali; was able to outline the areas of capacity building the Pharmacy Board Laboratory staff have undergone in the past six months.
Monographs, he said, are further developed into pharmacopoeia [legal documents of drugs and pharmaceutical specifications] for used by medical and pharmaceutical professionals.
Starting with the just concluded training, the acting manager at the lab revealed that the CTI saw the need for training medical laboratory professionals, because the World Health Organization Project on medicine use in Africa states that 80% of drugs used in Africa are traditional herbal products.