In a bid to ensure safer medicine, the Centre is planning to upgrade two new laboratories in Mumbai and Chennai, as ‘appellate testing laboratories’. They will aim to check drug samples collected by regulators as part of market surveillance and plant inspections.
The two labs have so far used by state regulators and the central regulator will upgrade them to deal with demands.
Currently, only one such lab is in Kolkata, so the new laboratories will add to the government’s capacity to test the samples. This will also improve standards and less susceptible to manipulation, as they will work under government suspension.
Government is planning to increase the frequency of inspections as well as fast-track process to process approvals in time.
“At present companies know where we are sending product samples and can sometimes manage the system. Designating multiple laboratories can check this,” an official said.
The proposal is part of the agenda to be taken up by the drug regulatory Drugs Technical Advisory Board for final approval.