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DH endorses batch recall of mercury-tainted proprietary Chinese medicine (with photo)
     The Department of Health (DH) today (February 28) endorsed Chuan Chiong Company Ltd, the registration holder of a proprietary Chinese medicine (pCm) called Jin Gui Shen Chi Wan (registration No. HKP-04432), to recall from consumers one of its batches (batch No. 162151) as a sample has been found to contain excessive mercury.

     The batch recall followed as a sample of the above pCm obtained through the DH's market surveillance was found by the Government Laboratory to contain 2.6 times the permitted level of mercury under the registration criteria of pCms formulated by the Chinese Medicine Council of Hong Kong (CMCHK).

     Initial investigations revealed that Chuan Chiong imported the above batch from the Mainland for packaging in Hong Kong before its distribution to the local market.

     According to its label, the above pCm is indicated for general debility, aching in the loins, weakness of legs, frequent urination as well as cold hands and feet. The ingredients do not include any Chinese herbal medicines known to be rich in mercury. The DH's investigation is ongoing.

     "Acute mercury poisoning can cause inflammation of the mouth while prolonged exposure to mercury can damage the neurological system and kidneys. No related adverse events have been received so far," a spokesman for the DH said.

     Chuan Chiong has set up a hotline (2541 3717) for related enquiries. The DH will closely monitor the recall.

     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 a fine of $10,000 and three months' imprisonment. Upon completion of the investigation, the DH will work with the Department of Justice on prosecution matters and will refer this case to the CMCHK for possible disciplinary action.

     Members of the public who have purchased the above pCm should stop using it immediately. Those who have used the above pCm and feel unwell should seek advice from healthcare professionals. People who have the above pCm should submit it to the DH's Chinese Medicine Division on 16/F, AIA Kowloon Tower, Landmark East, 100 How Ming Street, Kwun Tong, during office hours for disposal.
Ends/Tuesday, February 28, 2017
Issued at HKT 19:00
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The Department of Health today (February 28) endorsed a batch recall of mercury-tainted Jin Gui Shen Chi Wan.