Dr Ella suggests merger of state, central drug bodies for standardization

He said that “some political will and commitment” is required for initiating the merger of the state and central drug regulators.

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By: Subham Tiwari
Updated: 05 February, 2023 7:02 pm IST
Bharat Biotech executive chairman Dr Krishna Ella (left) sharing stage with his wife Dr Suchitra Ella at an event in New Delhi on Sunday.

Bharat Biotech co-founder Dr Krishna Ella on Sunday suggested a merger of state drug regulators with the central authority to ensure standardization of drug quality monitoring in the country. His statement comes in backdrop of questions being raised about the quality of India-made drugs over the past few months.

The latest event was on Friday when a Tamil Nadu-based pharma company recalled its entire lot of eye drops allegedly linked to vision loss in the United States.

Responding to questions about the quality of Indian drugs, Dr Ella said, “Cough syrup is not monitored by the central drug controller. That is one of the mistakes. Authorisation and monitoring of cough syrups are given by state regulators. If you merge them, all problems are solved.”

He said that “some political will and commitment” is required for merging the state and central drug regulators.

The entire Indian pharmaceutical industry cannot be painted in a bad picture because of mistakes committed by a few, the Bharat Biotech executive chairman said.

“There should be a single regulatory framework in the country. All state drug regulatory bodies should be merged with the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) and that will solve the problem,” Dr Ella said.

The ace scientist further said: “Since we are living in the Internet age and different people make different kinds of comments, people think Indian companies are bad. We have very good companies. Some local agencies are getting into trouble. It is not an Indian problem.”

He said that India’s first indigenously developed anti-Covid vaccine, Covaxin is the most popular and demanded Covid vaccine in India.

He was speaking on the sidelines of an event held for signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between his Ella Foundation and the University of Wisconsin, Madison, the US for cutting-edge research in the areas of human, veterinary, and plant diseases.

“University of Wisconsin is one of the best universities for research on humans, plants, and cattle. They have produced the highest number of virologists. We felt the need for the collaboration because we realized that we need to think as a strategist and start preparing ourselves for prevention of any such future health emergency or disease,” he stated.

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