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Expert Panel to Seek Suggestions from NCB, Drug Regulators on New Law for Medicines

Representative image/PTI

Representative image/PTI

The panel, constituted to frame new laws for medicines, cosmetics and medical devices, will submit the draft document by November 30 after more than 10 stakeholder meetings.

A panel of experts working to frame new laws for medicines will soon seek recommendations from the Narcotics Control Bureau, News18.com has learnt.

First reported by News18.com, the Narendra Modi government on August 27 formed an eight-member panel to frame new laws for medicines, cosmetics and medical devices, headed by Drug Controller General of India VG Somani.

EXCLUSIVE: Modi Govt Sets Up Panel to Frame New Laws for Medicines, Cosmetics, Medical Devices

The panel has planned to conduct more than 10 stakeholder meetings before kick-starting the process to write the first draft. It has already finished the consultations with four stakeholders — consumer groups, chemist associations, drug manufacturing companies and contract research organisations (CROs).

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The panel will submit the draft document by November 30.

“We are on track to submit the draft by the given deadline. This is for the first time that the panel is holding consultations even before making the draft,” Narender Ahooja, State Drugs Controller, Haryana who is also a member of the panel, told News18.com. “We want to take recommendations from each and every stakeholder before we start sketching the law.”

The next stakeholders in line include patients, medical device makers, hospitals and cosmetic manufacturers. “The making of this act will also involve consultations with the narcotics bureau followed by meetings with drug regulators across India,” Ahooja said.

Making of the Law

The discussions with stakeholders are planned in such a way that it is convenient for everyone to participate, the officer claimed. “The stakeholders are invited for discussions either on weekends, holidays or during late evenings on virtual sessions.”

After consultations, the committee will examine the present Act and submit a draft document for a de-novo Drugs, Cosmetics and Medical Devices bill.

According to India’s apex regulatory body, Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 regulates the import, manufacture, distribution and sale of drugs and cosmetics. Recently, it was amended to add medical devices.

Other members of the panel include Rajiv Wadhawan (director, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare), Dr Eswara Reddy (joint drug controller), AK Pradhan (joint drug controller), IAS officer NL Meena, and drug controllers of Gujarat and Maharashtra.

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first published:September 30, 2021, 09:48 IST