Private hospital sanctioned for advertising prescription drugs in COVID-19 treatment packages
A private hospital in Khlong Luang district of Pathum Thani province is facing a fine and its management may face imprisonment after it was found to have advertised COVID-19 treatment packages which included Favipiravir and Molnupiravir to home isolation patients, in violation of the Hospital Act.
Dr. Tares Krassanairawiwong, director-general of the Health Service Support Department, and Dr. Surachoke Tangwiwat, deputy secretary-general of the Thai Food and Drug Administration (TFDA) led a team of health officials to the hospital yesterday (Wednesday) to investigate.
The two doctors said that the hospital, the name of which was withheld, did not have permission from the Health Service Support Department to publish the advertisement offering the medical service packages.
The hospital is liable to a maximum fine of 20,000 baht, plus a daily fine of 10,000 baht until the advertisement is withdrawn from all media. Additionally, the management of the hospital could face a maximum jail term of one year.
They also said that Favipiravir and Molnupiravir are prescription drugs and are normally administered to patients according to their symptoms and are not prescribed for everyone who catches COVID-19.
Meanwhile, the TFDA has warned private hospitals and the public not to buy the two COVID-19 drugs online, noting that it is illegal as they are prescription drugs.
Also, Molnupiravir is not recommended for use by pregnant women.