Caretaker Health Minister Hamad Hassan carried out on Monday an inspection tour of warehouses that store medicines and infant milk in many Lebanese regions.
The tour aimed to monitor the selling and distribution of medicines in light of the companies’ remittances received by the Ministry of Health from the Central Bank.
Hassan found tons of essential medicines, that are missing in the market, stored in warehouses, as well as large quantities of antibiotics and infant milk.
A large amount of medicines was found in a drug warehouse in Jadra, including medicines for diabetes, kidney diseases, blood pressure, blood clots, epilepsy, and also stomach protection and burn medicines, pain relievers, insulin and antibiotics.
The minister was accompanied by a patrol from the anti-financial crimes unit of the Internal Security Forces and the file was referred to the judiciary for follow up.
Hassan said that the medicines found in the warehouse included large quantities of subsidized medicines, among which are burn treatment creams, “while victims of the al-Tleil explosion have suffered from the absence of medicines to soothe their pain.”
He assured that the “investigations will continue in order to identify the culprits,” adding that “the violation is clear” and that “there will be a judicial, financial and administrative process.”
Hassan also raided a drug warehouse in Al-Akibiya, south of Lebanon, where he found medicines for epilepsy, thyroid disorders and other chronic diseases, as well as a large number of OTC medicines and infant milk.
After contacting the financial prosecutor in southern Lebanon Judge Raheef Ramadan, it was decided that the warehouse will be sealed with red wax.
Hassan issued an exceptional decision to sell the medicines to the public and to the pharmacies, especially baby formula and necessary medicines starting Tuesday morning, in the presence of the pharmaceutical Inspection of the Ministry of Health.