The Role of Drug Regulatory Authority in Ethical Promotion of Pharmaceuticals in Pakistan: A Grounded Theory Study

Fazle Malik, Saadullah shah, S.M. Majid Shah


This paper elucidates on the current achievements of Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) in ethical promotion of medicines. The old orthodoxy of maximizing shareholders wealth has no significance in contemporary businesses where prominence is given to fair, transparent and ethical behaviors. Ethical and moral behaviors in product promotion are linchpins for pharmaceutical industry. Pharmaceuticals reduce illness of mankind and their appropriate promotion further boosts the wellbeing and reduces sufferings of patients. Nevertheless, Pharmaceutical marketing has an unswerving and unwavering impact on human lives, so this entails regularization and legalization of the discipline through an authentic statutory body. This study conducted open ended interviews from 12 respondents which consist of DRAP employees, sales managers from industry, and pharmacists. After analysis and findings of data, a theme explicitly emerged which shows that the current performance of DRAP is unjustifiable and not up to the mark in governing the sales and use of controlled drugs. The categories are poor enforcement, failure to implement Drug Act 1976 and lack of power to mitigate the malpractices of drugstores. Inescapably, the sales of drugs over-the-counter are common which leads to drug overuse and misuse and subsequently increase the chances of drug related side effects, particularly antibiotic resistance. This is an emerging global challenge for all stakeholders. The study suggests some recommendations for improving the current performance of DRAP within the existing resources.

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