NAFDAC, Paxherbals clinic partner to boost healthcare delivery with natural medicine

Director-General of NAFDAC, Paul Orhii

Director-General of NAFDAC, Paul Orhii

The National Agency for Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and Paxherbals clinic and research laboratories in Ewu, Edo state, has started a partnership aimed to boost healthcare delivery in the country through natural medicine.

Director-General of NAFDAC, Dr. Paul Orhii, during an official visit to the Paxherbals clinic and research laboratories in Ewu, Edo state on Monday, June 15, emphasised that herbal medicine has a big role to play in healthcare delivery in Nigeria.

Director of Paxherbals, Fr. Anselm Adodo, in a statement, released after the visit by Orhii, said: “Paxherbals is the only herbal manufacturing company left in Nigeria that is still locally producing its herbal medicines, despite the harsh economic climate which makes it easier and more profitable to be an importer rather than a manufacturer. It is no wonder that the Nigerian market is flooded with herbal products from China, India and other Asian countries, and from Europe. By so doing, Nigeria is creating wealth abroad and promoting poverty at home.

“After a tour of the ultra-modern facilities which include the microbiology, Quality control, chemistry as well as diagnostic laboratories, the herbarium, production and processing workshops, Dr. Paul Orhii expressed satisfaction at the high level of scientific research, quality assurance and good manufacturing practice at Paxherbals, which he believes is the best of its kind in Nigeria and West Africa. He therefore extended hands of fellowship to the management of Paxherbals as partners in progress.”

NAFDAC Director-General promised to continue to do what he can to further strengthen the capacity of traditional healers in ensuring quality assurance and good manufacturing practice. Orhii frowned at some herbal practitioners who make bogus and unsubstantiated claims about herbals cures. He thanked Paxherbals for introducing true professionalism and scientific rigour to research and production of herbal medicine. Orhii encouraged Fr. Adodo and his team to continue to be true ambassadors of herbal medicine not only in Nigeria but also in Africa as a whole.

Head of scientific research and development at Paxherbals, Prof. Joseph Okogun, stressed the need for NAFDAC to support herbal practitioners in drug standardization, laboratory analysis and training, since many herbal practitioners do not have the financial capacity to operate a standard laboratory.

Adodo added: “If NAFDAC wants to leave a lasting legacy for herbal medicine development in Nigeria, we are your best ally. If you want to set a sustainable standard for herbal medicine promotion and development in Nigeria, we are your best collaborator. If you want to make history by initiating the first clinical trial of herbal products for diabetes, malaria and hypertension (to mention a few) in Africa, we are your best bet.

“There are thousands of traditional herbal practitioners out there who have efficacious herbal recipes for serious chronic diseases. They need help and training in standardisation and packaging. Some of them are trying to set up tiny ‘factories’ in their backyard as laboratories. These people may never have the technical and financial capacity to meet NAFDAC requirements for registration. If they die with such valuable knowledge, posterity will not forgive us. Here at Paxherbals, we empasise with them and we speak for them. They know and trust us. Most often, they accuse NAFDAC of being a bully rather than partner in progress.

“We are ready and willing to partner with NAFDAC to reach out to these people and assure them that NAFDAC is their friend not their enemy. For at the end of the day, what NAFDAC under your administration will be remembered for is not how many local factories it managed to close down but how it was able to encourage, support, sustain and nurture local pharmaceutical companies and helped to preserve indigenous knowledge”.

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