Health, Drug Control Officials To Monitor Sale Of Abortion Kits

Bengaluru: Officers from the State Health Department and the Drugs Control Department in Karnataka will collaborate to conduct inspections of medical stores statewide, ensuring proper sale of MTP (Medical Termination of Pregnancy) kits.

A circular issued on Wednesday said officials from both departments convened a meeting on June 10 to discuss how illegal sale and use of MTP kits, which comprises mifepristone 200 mg and misoprostol 800 mg drugs, was rampant in the state, especially through medical stores, registered and unregistered hospitals, and quacks.

Both these drugs belong to the Schedule ‘H’ class of prescription drugs, which means they cannot be sold over the counter without a qualified doctor’s prescription.

The circular highlighted that these drug sales were occurring without prescriptions from doctors, leading to concerns about female foeticide and posing risks to women’s health. Media reports were cited to underscore the seriousness of the issue.

Sale of these drugs without prescriptions or aborting a foetus in unregistered places or offering the drugs with the advice or prescriptions from unregistered doctors are illegal and violations under the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Amendment Act, 2021.

In a bid to curb such violations and rampant female foeticide, both departments have decided to conduct a joint inspection every month.

District-wise teams comprising a district assistant drugs controller, a taluk health officer and medical officer will be sent out to randomly check medical stores in each district.

They have been instructed to investigate and report on the status of illegal sales of these drugs, outlining necessary actions for each case. Reports are to be submitted to the state family welfare wing of the Health Department by the 20th of every month.

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