VISAKHAPATNAM: Another incident of black marketing of Remdesivir was busted in the city. The issue came to light after authorities filed a case in the court against Speciality Pharmaceuticals at Akkayyapalem for selling the drug without any bill.The latest raids were conducted only days after the arrest of Omni RK Hospital staff for selling the drug illegally.
Speaking to TNIE, Drugs Control Administration assistant director K Rajitha said the department officials raided the company, and found that its owner sold 36 vials of Remdesivir to individuals without any bills. “There were no bills or details regarding whom Remdesivir was sold to.”
As per the rules, the drug should be sold only to hospitals, but the pharmacy at Akkayyapalem allegedly sold it individuals. Though the government had put a cap on the price of each injection at Rs 2,500, the pharmacy owner sold each vial for Rs 7,500.
Stating that it was a clear violation of the rules, she said they filed a preliminary case in the court and would file a chargesheet soon. A case on the pharmacy of Omni RK Hospital was also filed after a joint-inspection with vigilance officials was conducted, she added. “The pharmacy at Akkayyapalem was found selling the vials at more than the prescribed rate of Rs 2,500. It claimed that there was a software glitch.”
Stating that there was a shortage of Remdesivir, she said the DCA will continue the search and raids on hospitals and pharmacies to stop the sale of the drug in black market. She added there are 2,933 Remdesivir vials in government hospitals, and 845 in private hospitals in the district as on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the III-town police arrested four staff—housing keeping manager, supervisor and two nurses—of Omni RK Hospital, who were charged on Monday for indulging in the illegal sale of Remdesivir.
Speaking to the media, ACP Harishita said the accused diverted six Remdesivir vials and sold them in black market. The arrested were identified as N Sarveswara Rao , I Venkata Rao, S Sindhuja and G Divya.