Why do drugs expire in stores?

After it was revealed that government had disposed of  1200 to 1500 tons of expired drugs, questions were raised as to why the drugs were allowed to expire in the first place when some health centres have no drugs.

In an interview with NBS TV, Moses Kamabare, the executive director of the National Medical Stores (NMS) said there are glaring loopholes that need to be addressed if the rate of expiration of drugs is to be curbed.

He said some drugs expire quickly due to their molecular composition for instance laboratory reagents.

Kamabare said NMS had come up with an intelligence based application that will help in the planning and management for medications for health centres.

"This will enable health centres know how much will be needed and calculate levels of absorption to avoid over stocking that has sometimes seen these drugs expire," he said.

He said under the new mechanism, there will be possibility of health centers communicating with each other and sharing needed basic supplies that would have stayed on the shelves of health facilities without being used.

Kamabare however said their budget is not sufficient to enable them carry out annual incinerations of expired drugs with the last having been carried out in 2012.

This has increased the risk of using expired drugs amongst the public.


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