Outdated medicine blinds elderly patients in Erbil

By Mufid Abdulla:

Victims of outdated medicine

Some of the victims of outdated medicine

A row is raging between the health minister, Dr Rekawt Hama Rashid, and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) over the use of outdated medicines by an Erbil hospital which has blinded around 30 patients.

The expired medicine was brought to the Kurdistan Region by a Turkish businessman who supplied it to a medical company in Erbil which in turn supplied it to Rizgari Hospital.  At a press conference, Dr Rekawt a Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) member, astonished everyone by insisting that this tragedy is no accident. “The businessman in Turkey knew the medicine is fake and outdated”, he said. “The company in Erbil knew the medicine … is expired and the hospital knew about it and used it as well”.

Health Minister, Dr Rekawt

Health Minister, Dr Rekawt

This outrage is symptomatic of the corruption pervading the south of Kurdistan. Who are these people importing and trading in bad medicines? It is a lucrative business and most of the time there are Kurdish politicians behind it. There are rumours in Erbil that someone in the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) leadership is involved.

I think prime minister Nicherven Barzani and president Masud Barzani should appear on Kurdish TV to explain what has happened and what they are doing to prevent a recurrence and ensure proper quality controls in future.

Why has no one yet been arrested in this case?  People are furious. Most of the victims are elderly, many have gone blind and now the KRG has sent them to a hospital in Turkey for specialist, emergency treatment. What an indictment of our corrupt society.

Photos: (1) Lvinpress (2) Hawlati

Copyright © 2013 Kurdistantribune.com

One Response to Outdated medicine blinds elderly patients in Erbil
  1. Dr.N. Hawramany
    April 19, 2013 | 12:06

    This is a political and medical scandal by all means, in any other civilized country the culprits would have been brought promptly to justice.
    How could a doctor who has sworn never to harm a patient, allows himself to directly inject a medication into the eye when he is sure that this medication is expired or inproperly stored, such doctors should be erased from medical register.The director of Rizgari hospital should be iterrogated about the details of this mishap! what a pathetic health system.The relatives of those patients should prosecute those responsible for this catastrophic crime.

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