Controlling the facilities of wholesaling, retailing pharmaceuticals trading products containing Methanol

Official Letter 2377/BYT-QLD provide guidance on enhancement of management of Methanol products purchased and sold by pharmacy business establishments.

Definition of Methanol

In the Official Dispatch No. 2377/BYT-QLD dated May 10, 2022 of the Ministry of Health on enhancement of management of Methanol-containing products traded at pharmacy business establishments, the Ministry of Health has specified the methhanol as follows:

- Methanol refers to chemicals which are used for the purpose of combustion, cleaning tools and solvent of experimental chemicals, other than drugs and medicinal ingredients, and are not used for medical antiseptic purposes. Currently, a number of drug retailers display and sell Methanol-containing products which are mistaken with disinfectant alcohol or use instructions such as disinfectants from skin, disinfectants in medical use, causing harms to life and health of users, and are not meant to do so.

Therefore, alcoholic products containing Methanol are not permitted to be used for hand washing, antiseptic to cope with Covid-19 epidemic.

Controlling the facilities of wholesaling, retailing pharmaceuticals trading products containing Methanol

Responsibilities of state agencies in managing methanol-containing alcohol

Before the situation, the drug retailers trade in methhanol alcohol as a antiseptic solution, wash hands to cope with Covid-19 In order to assure the health and safety for people, the Ministry of Health issued a guidance to the Departments of Health in the provinces and cities directly under the Central Government to implement the work stipulated in item 1 of official dispatch 2377/BYT-QLD dated 10/5/2022 of the Ministry of Health as follows:

- Increasing the propagation of use of products of outskin antiseptic, hand antiseptic, Methanol and non-skin products, hand antiseptic;

- Direct the facilities trading in antiseptic drugs or products used for sterilization of skin or hand to check the composition and labels of such products before trading. Provide instructions to the buyers and the patients on the careful instructions before using the antiseptic products;

- Intensify inspection of the production and trade of antiseptic products from skin and hand disinfectants for medical use in the area, especially drug retailers, ensure that the drug retailers are not allowed to trade and display methanol-containing products.

- Direct the Inspectorate of the Department of Industry and Trade to cooperate with divisions affiliated to the Department and local authorities such as the Department of Industry and Trade and Market Surveillance in inspecting and imposing penalties on business establishments trading methhanol of which the business registration certificate does not violate regulations on chemical business and is not issued with the certificate of eligibility to trade in chemicals or has licenses but do not comply with regulations on chemical management and other relevant regulations.

Responsibilities of business establishments

Before the increasing demand for medical alcohol for hand washing and disinfection of people. In order to ensure the product quality and health of consumers, the Ministry of Health guides the pharmacy business establishments to implement the work under item 2 of the Official Dispatch No. 2377/BYT-QLD dated May 10, 2022 of the Ministry of Health as follows:

- Examine labels of antiseptic products, hand disinfectants used for healthcare before trading, clearly distinguish and avoid confusion between Methanol and amino-skin disinfectants, do not trade in thinned-out disinfectants and hand-use disinfectants when detecting ingredients that contain Methanol;

- Establishments with scope of chemical business and being granted certificate of eligibility for chemical business must comply with full provisions on import, production, trading, classification, labeling, making dossiers when trading in Methanol, mixture containing Methanol. Provide the purchaser with a full guidance on the use purpose of methhanol when trading in this chemical.

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