The Ministry of Health will be destroying pharmaceutical products that belongs to James Brodies and Company Ltd next week. Back in July 2017, a Statutory Instrument was enacted that made provisions for the importation of pharmaceuticals to Belize and required that all labelling and relevant documentation of all pharmaceutical products being imported to Belize must be in English and/or Spanish. The process started in November 2016, with all relevant stakeholders being duly informed of the regulations. As part of the process, the Ministry identified five pharmaceutical companies out of 37 that were previously importing products with labels in other languages. Four of these discontinued their importations except James Brodie and Company Ltd. on several occasions after, the Ministry monitored the company which still had products that failed to meet the requirements and by June 2018 the Ministry issued a letter to Brodies informing that any shipment that is on its way will not be allowed into the country unless they have been granted approval prior to its arrival. Brodies proceeded to import the container and an inspection of it reflected numerous inconsistencies. The shipment was flagged but could not get returned to the supplier. Director of Health Services Marvin Manzanero says these should be destroyed by next week.
Marvin Manzanero Director of Health: “I believe it’s pending destruction that will be done with customs and I believe Brodies representatives will usually have somebody from our end accompanying the process. I believe it should be done sometime next week.”
Manzanero says that the regulations remain the same for all importers across the board.
Marvin Manzanero Director of Health: “It has and remains across the board for everybody. I think we have seen a gradual increase in the amount of people submitting their GNP and following the new and expectant processes in that regard. We have had more people registering products this time around and so I think it is a work in progress. We are not really making exceptions unless its and urban drug that is needed and it’s for one or two patients and the urgency of the patients will mandate us to redo it otherwise.”