The National Drug Authority (NDA) has cautioned the public about the presence of counterfeit and unauthorized foot and mouth disease (FMD) vaccines in the market.
According to NDA’s post-market surveillance, counterfeit vaccines, such as Purified FMD FOTIVAX and Foot and Mouth Broad Spectrum Vaccine, manufactured by the national veterinary institute, lack NDA’s approval, raising concerns about their safety, quality, and efficacy.
“We urge the public to remain vigilant, particularly during this period of FMD outbreaks in certain regions of the country, and to report any suspected involvement in drug-related crimes,” stated NDA.
The current livestock quarantine in affected regions, including Mbarara, Ibanda, Kazo, Isingiro, Sheema, and Kiruhura, has placed many farmers under financial strain.
Foot and Mouth disease is highly contagious among livestock, including cattle, sheep, and goats, manifesting with fever and blister-like sores on the tongue, lips, mouth, teats, and between hooves. The disease causes significant production losses, often leaving affected animals weakened.
NDA reiterated that FMD vaccines are exclusively procured and imported by the government through the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry, and Fisheries, and distributed by district veterinary offices.
The FMD outbreak coincides with the country’s battle against Anthrax, leading to quarantine measures in several districts.