TMDA’s electronic system increases permits issuance by 200 pc

06Dec 2019
Devota Mwachang'a
The Guardian
TMDA’s electronic system increases permits issuance by 200 pc

THE Tanzania Medicines and Medical Devices Authority (TMDA) has issued a total of 26,478 permits in the financial year 2018/19 compared to 13,018 issued in 2015/16, equivalent to an increase of 203 per cent.

Adam Fimbo

This has been achieved through use electronic system which enables customers to submit applications and pay fees online before being issued with the permit within 24 hours.

 

A statement issued yesterday by the Acting Director General of TMDA Adam Fimbo said they have succeeded to increase the importation and exportation control of medicine and medical devices within and outside the country through an electronic system.

Fimbo said the issuance of permits to customers has been facilitated largely through a system of Integrated Management Information System (IMIS) which is used to keep information and data of TMDA comprised of products, buildings registered and those of the customers whereas they can bring their applications online without going physically to the offices.

“In carrying out the instruction of the President Dr John Magufuli issued on May, 2017 which aims to speed up the delivery of cargo at the Port, the authority has set its inspectors who work 24 hours a day all week, a move enabled it successfully achieved and exceed the goals set in the controlling of quality, safety and efficacy of drugs, medical devices, and reagents to protect public health," explained Fimbo.

The acting director general said: "Within this four years in the leadership of President Magufuli we have managed to implement a programme of monitoring the quality of products on the market (Post Marketing Surveillance Programme - PMS), about 1,136 samples of human medicines where monitored and investigated in this period where the 96% continued to meet quality criteria.”

According to Fimbo, TMDA has introduced an electronic system known as "ADR reporting tool" for monitoring the public reporting of adverse drug reactions and medical devices by using mobile phones or computers to send messages.

He explained that TMDA staffs have conducted investigation in the year 2017/2018, and destroyed the total of 140,705.25 tonnes of pharmaceutical products and medical devices for human use worth 22,394,078,744 shillings compared to the destroyed 664.68 tonnes in 2018/19.

He added that TMDA has strengthened laboratory activities to increase surveillance equipment including the installation of 25 small movable laboratory (minilab kits) at the customs stations in favour of the preliminary investigation of the product. Survey results show that the samples examined met criteria of quality and safety standards to an average of 90%.

Meanwhile, Fimbo said the authority has increased its budget from 34.64bn/- in year 2015/16 to 53.31bn/- in year 2018/19 equivalent to 53.8%. This has enabled service delivery efficiency and provide dividends to the government each year up to about 29bn/-.

TMDA was established in 2003 and operates under the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children. TMDA was known as the Tanzania Food and Drug Authority (TFDA) before its obligations changed from July this year when the Finance Act of 2019 made amendment to the authority’s law.