Fake prescriptions rife on social media

Corona patients being misled about proper treatment

Mohammad Al Amin

6th July, 2021 11:18:04 PM printer

Fake prescriptions rife on social media

Many fake prescriptions of some renowned medicine specialists for the treatment of corona patients have been posted on facebook and other social media sites, which may endanger their life.

Health experts warned that taking any medications and preventative measures against the deadly disease from social media sites can cause harmful effects for the patients.

“Posting any fake prescription on social media is totally illegal and unjust. Such a fake prescription definitely misleads people about treatment of any diseases, including Covid-19,” Prof Dr Robed Amin, a spokesperson for the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), told the Daily Sun.

Mentioning that taking wrong medicine can be dangerous to human health anytime, instead curing coronavirus infection, he said the patients should consult doctors or take advice through telemedicine service of the DGHS about treatment of coronavirus.

After the spread of coronavirus, many people post or share prescriptions published in the name of some renowned medicine specialists for medicines, including Azithromycin antibiotic drug, for Covid-19 patients.

Recently in the name of medicine specialist and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's personal physician Dr ABM Abdullah, a fake prescription has been released on facebook that prescribes some medicines, including higher antibiotic, for Covid-19 treatment.

A number of people have shared the prescription through the social media to others during the fresh surge of coronavirus.

“It is a totally fake prescription. I didn’t give such a prescription for Covid-19 patients. The treatment method for coroanvirus infection actually depends on patient’s condition—whether patients’ condition mild, moderate or severe,” he said.

Dr ABM Abdullah, also former professor of the Department of Internal Medicine and dean of Faculty of Medicine at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU), advised people to consult doctors about treatment of coroanvirus.

“Taking any wrong medicine and without advice of doctors can be harmful to patients,” he added.

Talking to the Daily Sun, some patients said instead of consulting doctors, they have taken different medicines, including higher antibiotics and Ivermectin.

“I caught fever few days ago and then talked to my friend who got a prescription of a famous doctor from facebook,” Syed Hasinur Rahman of Santhia upazila in Pabna district told the Daily Sun.

Another middle-aged man said despite having some symptoms of Covid-19, he refrained from undergoing a corona test, but collected a prescription from his friend who is a Covid-19 victim, and bought medicines from local pharmacy and he was cured.

Talking to the Daily Sun about fake prescriptions on social media, Additional DIG (CPC) of CID Md Kamrul Ahsan said, “If anyone lodges any complaint to police or court, it will be easy to carry out investigation into this issue.”

According to the World Health Organisation, there is no specific treatment yet for the coronavirus infection.

However, the DGHS has made a ‘National Guidelines on Clinical Management of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)’ for physicians to give treatment of coronavirus in the country.

“We request every clinic and hospital that will treat Covid-19 ‘confirmed’, ‘probable’, or ‘suspect’ cases, to follow the guidelines. This is a living document. We will update the guidelines from time to time to incorporate latest evidence and recommendations of WHO,” the preface of the guideline reads.

The WHO warned that medications can greatly improve health when used wisely and correctly. “Nevertheless, medication errors are common and cause preventable human suffering and financial cost,” it added.

According to US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), “Sticking to your medication routine (or medication adherence) means taking your medications as prescribed – the right dose, at the right time, in the right way and frequency. Why is doing these things important? Simply put, not taking your medicine as prescribed by a doctor or instructed by a pharmacist could lead to your disease getting worse, hospitalization, even death.”

However, the health directorate of Bangladesh repeatedly has asked people not to take medicine for treatment of coronavirus without doctors’ advice.

The health directorate has opened telemedicine services to ensure proper treatment of coronavirus patients. People can easily talk to doctors through dialing 16263, 333 or 10655.