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Recall of proprietary Chinese medicines with failed microbial limit (with photos)

     The Department of Health (DH) today (May 9) instructed a licensed proprietary Chinese medicine (pCm) manufacturer, Ching Chung Yuk Po Limited (Ching Chung Yuk Po), to recall from consumers all batches of its two registered pCms, namely Kyuwei (36 capsules per bottle and 16 capsules per box )(registration number: HKP-00808) and U.T.Healthy Capsules (registration number: HKP-00807), as their microbial limit exceeded the registration criteria set out by the Chinese Medicines Board of the Chinese Medicine Council of Hong Kong.

     "Upon receipt of an intelligence related to the quality of pCms of Ching Chung Yuk Po, DH initiated investigations immediately and took five samples of the pCms namely Kyuwei (36 capsules per bottle and 16 capsules per box), U.T.Healthy Capsules, Vincarosea (registration number: HKP-00809) and Kasamutom (registration number HKP-02639) from Ching Chung Yuk Po's factory for laboratory testing. Today, laboratory results revealed that the three samples of Kyuwei (36 capsules per bottle and 16 capsules per box) and U.T.Healthy Capsules were found to have total bacterial counts of 11 000 per gram, 1 700 000 per gram and 38 000 per gram respectively, which ranged from about 1.1 to 170 times of the registration criteria. The test results of the remaining two pCms are pending," a DH spokesman said.

     "Preliminary investigation showed that Ching Chung Yuk Po was the sole manufacturer of the aforementioned pCms in Hong Kong. The factory had ceased operation since June 2011 as it was planning to move to a new premises. Investigation continues and the DH will closely monitor the recall," the spokesman remarked.

     The manufacturer has set up a telephone hotline (2333 3912) to answer public enquiries. No adverse events related to use of the above pCms have been received by the DH so far.

     "According to Section 52 of the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap 132), selling any drug not of the nature, substance or quality demanded by the purchaser is liable to a maximum penalty of $10,000 and three months' imprisonment. Upon completion of investigation, the DH will work with the Department of Justice for prosecution matters and will also refer this case to the Chinese Medicine Council of Hong Kong for possible disciplinary action," the spokesman said.

     The spokesman urged members of the public to stop using the above pCms immediately. Those who have used the pCms and felt unwell should seek advice from their health care professionals. People who have the above pCms should submit it to the Chinese Medicine Division of the DH at 16/F, AIA Kowloon Tower, Landmark East, 100 How Ming Street, Kwun Tong, Kowloon, during office hours for disposal.

Ends/Thursday, May 9, 2013
Issued at HKT 22:27


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