A brief look at a complex matter: Regulation and registration of complementary medicines and health supplements

  • Lorraine Osman


“Ethical pharmacists should not sell quackery”

This was the title of an article written by columnist Ivo Vegter for the Daily Maverick in May 2018. The trigger for the article was a bottle of complementary medicine that he saw in a pharmacy. Its label claimed that it contains a “natural antibiotic”. The patient information leaflet stated that the product had not been evaluated by the Medicines Control Council (MCC), and concluded by saying that the medicine was not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. The columnist questioned why an ethical pharmacist would sell products that made contradictory claims natural antibiotic vs not intended to cure a disease) that had not been evaluated by the MCC.

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