I dropped off this comment on the REACH site in relation to H1N1. This is strictly based on my understanding and what I remember about what i read earlier about extending the expiry date for the Tamiflu stockpile.
This is rather belated I know since the news report but it has been something on my mind so I decided to comment on it, regardless.
I read with concern that MOH had requested the manufacturer of the Tamiflu drug to extend the expiry date of the product for another three years. The reason, if I remember correctly, is that Singapore tends to be more stringent about expiry dates of medicine and therefore by international standard, the Tamiflu [stockpile in question], is still good for consumption.
I have four questions in relation to this action:
1. Why, if we have established a policy & procedure for expiry of medicine, do we re-visit it only now? And why only for the Tamiflu.
2. I remember reading before this announcement that Indonesia faced the same issue and the government destroyed all expired supply immediately. Why if Indonesia, who is generally not known, for stringent adherence to policy (where and if there is one) thinks that it is not safe for consumption, do we think that it is?
3. Hand to heart, would VIPs and VVIPs etc…etc… in Singapore or coming to Singapore for treatment also be administered the same supply of the same stock of extended expiry Tamiflu? Would the very same policy makers also be treated with the same and consume it?
4. Why, if it’s still effective and therefore legitimate for expiry to be extended, is there an explicit letter to GPs requiring GPs to get waiver from patients, before administering the drug? Or is this not true?
Look forward to hearing an honest and sincere response.
On behalf of the underdogs,