JAMAICA is yet to win a medal in the men’s 110 metres hurdles at the IAAF World Championships, but history is on the horizon. Two athletes, Omar McLeod and Hansle Parchment, with strong medal prospects in the event will represent the island at the 2015 Beijing World Championships. The country’s best placing in the event at these championships came at the 2009 Berlin meet where Maurice Wignall finished fifth and Dwight Thomas seventh. World leader Orlando Ortega of Cuba, with a winning time of 12.94 seconds at the Paris Diamond League, will not be in Beijing and as a result of this, Jamaica’s Omar McLeod will go into the championships as the top seed, following his personal best of 12.97 to win at the Jamaica National Senior Championships in June. Only one other athlete, defending champion, American David Oliver, with 12.98, has gone sub 13 seconds this season. With no one taking the event this season by ‘storm’, Jamaica’s top two – McLeod and Hansle Parchment, with a season best of 13.08 – both have glorious opportunities to put their names and the country’s into the history book. Parchment does have the potential to go sub-13 seconds, as a year ago in Monaco he raced to victory in a personal best of 12.95. However, he has not competed since the June Trials. With world record holder Aries Merritt of the United States and France’s Pascal Martinot-Lagarde both struggling for good form, this will be a wide open race. After a wonderful 2015 season on the collegiate circuit where he dominated his peers, McLeod looks set to go much faster than his 12.97 best.He has an excellent start and good speed over the first three hurdles and could dominate early and ‘leave the field for dead’. Teammate Parchment, who mined bronze in the event at the 2012 London Olympic Games, may lack the competitive edge, but if he reports fit for Beijing, he could be among the medals. The other Jamaican in the event, Andrew Riley, will need a big improvement on his season’s best of 13.28 to be a factor. Oliver, the defending champion, will be hard to beat, but has his problems. He tends to start slowly and he will need to be on top of his game to win this event. Of the others, Serjey Shubenkov of Russia looks the best of the lot. While McLeod seems to be the best tactically in the event, Oliver with his experience is given the edge, but just to get the win here over McLeod. MY TOP THREE: 1. David Oliver (USA), 2. Omar McLeod (Jamaica), 3. Serjey Shubenkov (Russia). SET TO GO FASTER
The Government Analyst-Food and Drug Department (GA-FDD) recently participated in the Seventh Meeting of Member State Mechanism on Substandard and Falsified (SF) medical products hosted by the World Health Organisation (WHO) at its Geneva, Switzerland headquarters.Guyana was represented at the meeting, which lasted from November 27 to 30, by GA-FDD Director Marlan Cole.According to a statement from the Department, discussions at that meeting targeted problems associated with SF medical products entering the global supply chain, particularly in middle and low-income countries.This problem was highlighted in a Study of the Public Health and Socioeconomic Impact of SF medical products published by WHO in 2017 and reports received by the WHO’s Global Surveillance Monitoring System (GSMS) for SF medical products, a surveillance system that was launched in July 2013.According to the Study by WHO, 1 in 10 or 10.5 per cent of medical productsGA-FDD Director Marlan Cole at the WHO meeting in Switzerland last monthsampled was SF and given the estimated market value of US$300 billion in middle and low-income countries, it equates to over US$30 billion in cost to these countries.In addition, the University of Edinburgh developed an Impact Model for WHO, which was used to estimate the impact of SF antibiotics for the treatment of childhood pneumonia in Sub-Saharan Africa. The model revealed that as many as 72,430 excess deaths can be attributed to SF antibiotics with reduced antibiotic activity and 169,271 excess deaths to SF antibiotics with no antibiotic activity.With regard to WHO’s Global Surveillance Monitoring System, it provides National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs), with a portal to report SF medical products and after four years, over 2000 SF medical products reports were received from 111 countries. Reports were in all therapeutic categories, ranging from cancer medicines to contraceptives and from antibiotics to vaccines. Reports were also evenly split between generic and innovator products with antimalarial and antibiotics being the most frequently reported.Moreover, the meeting also focused on significant works by the Member State Mechanism to fight SF medical products in the following areas: distribution or the supply of SF or “ fake” medical products via the Internet and medical products in-transit; strengthening of regulatory systems to prevent, detect and respond to SF medical products in health systems; guidance for manufacturers, importers, and distributors’ registration; the authorisation of medical products by Member States; and the advancement of a global communication campaign framework to combat the threat of SF medical products using IDEAS – insight, data, engagement, action, and solution.In Guyana, according to the GA-FDD, the first line of defence against SF medical products is enshrined in the Food and Drug Act, Chapter 34:04 and its accompanying regulations, particularly Regulation 78, whereby registration and authorisation of drugs are required based on the reliance (full assessment) for efficacy, quality, and safety by one or more of the following countries: the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada or Australia.In fact, in 2017, an additional pathway for registration was created when the Public Health Ministry and the GA-FDD signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Caribbean Regulatory System (CRS) for assistance with medical products registration. This was in an effort to ensure SF medical products do not enter our health-care system and that of the region.The GA-FDD said too that it has been faced with and also simultaneously advanced litigation regarding the sale, release, registration, and distribution of medical products that are not registered or intended for registration. In this regard and in efforts to protect Guyanese consumers from SF medical products, the Department has received key and critical support from the Public Health Ministry and the Attorney General (AG) Chambers with matters before the courts.On this note, the Department thanked the Government through its Public Health Ministry for its support in efforts to combat this problem with public health and economic implications.“The magnitude of this problem in Guyana is currently unknown; however this exposure and alliance will allow us to double our efforts to prevent, detect and respond to Substandard and falsified-SF medical products in our health-care delivery system, by scaling up wharf and facility inspections, medical products examination and sampling,” the GA-FDD said in its missive on Wednesday.