The Cayman Islands Health Services Authority (HSA) has immediately ceased the distribution of the generic medication valsartan, which is used to treat high blood pressure and heart failure due to an impurity discovered in the products and a recall issued by the United States Food and Drug Administration and The European Medicines Agency.
As part of its proactive approach, the Authority is contacting all its patients who are currently prescribed the medication to provide a recommended alternative. Those who have not received a call should contact the HSA at 345-916-8301.
Deputy Medical Director, Dr. Courtney Cummings says the quick action by the HSA, is part of its robust quality control initiatives in actively monitoring and responding to all alerts to ensure the safety and highest standards of pharmaceuticals dispensed to patients. “This is also why we maintain a high level of vigilance in the monitoring, sourcing and dispensing of all pharmaceuticals to protect our patients.”
Dr Cummings emphasizes that at present the Authority has not received any reports of adverse events related to this recall.
Patients in the private sector prescribed the medication should contact their pharmacist or physician who can advise them about an alternative treatment.
The US FDA advises that patients who are on valsartan should continue taking their medication, until an alternative is prescribed by their physician, as the risk of harm to a patient’s health may be higher if the treatment is stopped immediately without any alternative treatment.