Traditional medicines will be regulated by Rwanda Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), just like any other drugs to mitigate the negative impact these may have on people’s lives.
Over the weekend the Ministry of Health received boards of directors and other staff to help the Rwanda Foods and Drugs Authority to implement its mandate.
Dr. Charles Karangwa the Acting Director General of the body said that even traditional drugs will be tested and regulated before being consumed on Rwandan market.
All licensed foods and drugs will be tested before being put on Rwandan market, he said.
“Recently, we made an announcement to our various partners asking them to register their products in order to be able to be regulated before they are put on the market,” he said.
Traditional medicine, he said, has three categories; the first is made of traditional drugs that have been used in Rwanda for generations, and the healers who administer them will be helped to ensure hygiene and safety.
The second category consists of transformed traditional drugs, which will also be given assistance to maintain the hygiene and safety, and that ensure they are not harmful to patients, he said.
“That is why Government passed the law which sets up the umbrella of traditional healers in order to get all possible support to regulate what they do,” he said.
The third category, which is not available yet, consists of highly processed drugs from traditional medicine.
“For now, we don’t have any industry manufacturing drugs in Rwanda, but there are some which soon will start operating inside the country. Until now, processed medicines we use come from outside. We have hope that in the coming years, we will have many drugs manufactured from here,” he said.
Dr. Diane Gashumba, the Minister of Health said this authority was very crucial to regulate imported drugs.
“Before getting the authority, we used to work together with international bodies to monitor and regulate imported drugs. However, it was not good as a country to be dependent on foreign labs,” she said.
Very soon, the body will unveil its laboratory that fits international standards which will help in carrying out the tests.