The High Court (HC) today directed the government to take necessary steps to stop sale of antibiotic drugs without registered doctors’ prescriptions.
The court ordered the director general (DG) of the Directorate of Drug Administration to issue a circular to this effect in two days after receiving the order.
The DG will issue the circular so that the deputy commissioner and the civil surgeon take steps to stop the sale of antibiotic drugs without registered doctors’ prescriptions.
The HC also issued a rule asking the authorities concerned of the government to explain why selling antibiotic without prescription from registered doctors should not be declared illegal.
The HC bench of Justice Sheikh Hassan Arif and Justice Razik-Al-Jalil came up with the order and rule following a writ petition filed by SC lawyer barrister Sayedul Haque Suman seeking necessary order on the issue.
Citing the petition, Sayedul Haque said on many occasions antibiotic drugs are reportedly sold to people without doctors’ prescriptions and the medicines do not work for patients due to excessive use.
Quoting a senior doctor of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University, the lawyer, in the petition, said antimicrobial resistance superbug could be responsible for up to 80 percent deaths in the largest intensive care units of the country.
Prof Sayedur Rahman, chairman of the Department of Pharmacology at the BSMMU, told British daily The Telegraph that out of approximately 900 patients admitted to the BSMMU ICU last year, around 400 died.
Around 80 percent of those deaths were attributed to bacterial or fungal infections that were resistant to antibiotics, said the physician.
Barrister Suman annexed the Telegraph report published on April 22 along with the writ petition. The British newspaper referred to a report published in The Daily Star on April 8.
The report under the headline “A big cause for health concern” highlighted the overuse of antibiotics behind the spread of antimicrobial resistance (AMR).
Citing a study, it also stated that 70pc deaths in hospital ICUs were linked to AMR.
Experts have suggested that the government should take immediate measures to stop indiscriminate use of antibiotic drugs.