Hospital manager stole anti-viral drug for sale online

Hospital manager stole anti-viral drug for sale online

Boxes of the antiviral drug Favir seized from illegal online vendors, shown at the Consumer Protection Police Division in Bangkok on Wednesday. (Photo supplied)
Boxes of the antiviral drug Favir seized from illegal online vendors, shown at the Consumer Protection Police Division in Bangkok on Wednesday. (Photo supplied)

Police arrested nine suspects and seized antiviral drugs used in treating Covid-19 that were allegedly stolen by a hospital manager for sale online by the gang.

Pol Col Neti Wongkularb, superintendent of consumer protection police, said on Wednesday the suspects were arrested in coordinated raids in Bangkok, Saraburi, Pathum Thani and Nonthaburi on Tuesday.

Police seized 390 boxes each containing 100 favipiravir pills under the trademark Favir made by the Government Pharmaceutical Organisation.

The superintendent said the gang sold the antiviral medication online. The manager of a hospital in Bang Na area of Bangkok illegally supplied the drug, which the hospital earlier acquired from the GPO.

The manager charged 1,600 baht per box and online vendors resold it at 4,000-8,000 baht per box.

All names were withheld by police.

Supatra Boonserm, acting deputy secretary-general of the Food and Drug Administration, said favipiravir must be administered under the close supervision of doctors and could not be sold directly to consumers.

People who bought the drug to self medicate could cause a build up in resistance and even lead to death because of wrong usage.

She said patients in need of it would receive the drug free of charge from the government. 

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