Medi-snippets: Medi-snippets: Folic acid tablets safe – Health Ministry assures | Sunday Observer

Medi-snippets: Medi-snippets: Folic acid tablets safe – Health Ministry assures

7 July, 2019

The tiny folic acid tablets which all pregnant women receive free of charge from their health outlets when they go for their health screening, reportedly ran into some controversy recently when a women’s organisation charged that the tablets provided by the Medical Supplies Division (MSD) of the Health Ministry were of low quality. The Health Ministry reportedly refuted the charge following the MSD Director Dr Thusitha Sudarshana informing the Ministry that the tablets were of standard quality. According to him, the folic acid percentage that should be present in a tablet is 90%. He said that in 2014 some tablets containing 87% folic acid had been manufactured but they had been discarded and not issued to pregnant mothers. No money was paid for it, he had said. He emphasised that the batch of folic acid tablets issued to pregnant mothers have a quality assurance certificate issued by the National Medicines Regulatory Authority (NMRA) and the tablets are produced at the State Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Corporation (SPMC) which has an excellent reputation for high quality drugs. Health officials have urged pregnant mothers to use them as they contain important ingredients to prevent anaemia, a common problem in malnourished mothers.

Massive island-wide sweep on drugs

A series of special programs were organised island-wide recently in aid of the National Drug Prevention Week launched under the guidance of the President to eradicate drugs abuse in Sri Lanka. Informed sources were quoted as saying that Police officers and specialist doctors apprised the public of the issues arising from drug addiction and safety measures that could be followed against smoking and drug use. Students, undergrads, public servants and rehabilitated drug addicts were reported as having participated in these events. A special academic lecture on how to avoid using drugs was also held at the Army Hospital auditorium in Narahenpitiya under the patronage of the Chairman of the National Dangerous Drugs Control Board.

The National Drugs Prevention Week was implemented parallel to the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking which was observed on June 26. The national survey report jointly compiled by the Presidential Task Force on Drug Prevention, the Dangerous Drug Control Board and the Sri Lanka Police on the spread of drug usage was presented to the President on this occasion.

Private Company offers environment friendly solutions to hazardous industrial waste disposal.

A privately owned company Insee Encocycle Lanka, a waste management subsidiary of Insee Cement has recently signed an agreement extending its waste management services to the Board of Investment (BOI) for the next 16 years. The company reportedly offers environmental friendly solutions, especially, for managing industrial hazardous waste which cause serious health impacts.

Sri Lankan soldier wins award for safe sanitary pads disposal invention

A Sri Lankan army female soldier, Lance Corporal J.C.I Nshanthi of the 5 Sri Lanka Army Women’s Corps (SLAWC) won a silver medal at the Korean International Women’s Invention Exposition 2019 (KIWIE) beating hundreds of innovations presented by 38 countries, for her innovative invention which came under the category of “Efficient Incinerator for Safe Disposal of sanitary pad disposal and other bio waste at Women Living Facility” , a statement by the Sri Lanka Army issued last week read. The soldier’s creative innovation was first exposed in the Sahasak Nimavum 2018 a Sri Lankan Invention and Innovation exhibition organised by the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission (SLIC). It was submitted for this year’s exhibition since it had met international standards, the statement said.

Women’s Action Network to protect vulnerable women from violence

The Women’s Action Network, a collective of nine women’s organisations from the North and the East have in a recent media report called for the State, civil society and the international community to play a more active role in defending women targeted for sexual, communal and mental abuse in a conflict situation in the country. Referring in particular to Muslim women they have said that Muslim women were being targeted for their dress and female refugees and asylum seekers caught in the conflict after the Easter bomb attacks. They said these women had lost their dignity and emphasised that civil society should stand up for basic human dignity wherever it faces assault. They have also urged the repealing of emergency regulations that arbitrarily control women’s dress and reverse the course of the death penalty.

New district hospital in Hambantota

The new district hospital in Hambantota built with Dutch funding was opened by President Maithripala Sirisena on July 1.

The construction of the hospital began in 2012.

The hospital, built with Euro 46.8 million from the Dutch government is a modern hospital designed in modern standards to suit the environment with 850 beds. It also includes quarters for the doctors and the nurses .