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Home > 450. Deputy Joe Costello asked the Minister for Health his plans to criminalise imported prescription tablets being sold to drug addicts here. [38840/11]

[Oireachtas] 450. Deputy Joe Costello asked the Minister for Health his plans to criminalise imported prescription tablets being sold to drug addicts here. [38840/11]. (06 Dec 2011)

External website: http://debates.oireachtas.ie/dail/2011/12/06/00342...


Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Róisín Shortall): In accordance with international conventions, medicinal products which have the potential to be misused are controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Acts and Regulations. The Misuse of Drugs Regulations place strict controls on the prescribing, dispensing, supply and possession of those prescription medicines which are controlled. 

The problem of the misuse of prescription drugs has been recognised at national, European and international levels. Through the framework of the National Drugs Strategy 2009-2016, my Department is working in collaboration with the relevant statutory agencies to monitor the availability of controlled drugs, including prescription medicines, through illicit supply channels.
I am informed that An Garda Síochána is aware of the misuse and abuse of prescribed drugs. This frequently occurs where illegal substances subject to the Misuse of Drugs Acts have become scarce due to law enforcement measures. The Misuse of Drugs legislation provides for prosecutions in circumstances where substances seized, including prescribed drugs, are controlled substances under the legislation. My Department and the HSE are currently actively engaged in the development of measures to improve practices regarding the use of benzodiazepines and other related medicines within the health system and are reviewing legislative measures on the control of these substances. I can assure the Deputy that the enforcement of the law relating to the sale of drugs, including prescription drugs, continues to be a priority in the Government’s commitment to tackling the issue of drug misuse in this jurisdiction.
 
Written Answers - Medicinal Products
Tuesday, 6 December 2011
Dáil Éireann Debate Vol. 748 No. 7

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