No more diet pills sold over the counter

2008-05-31 00:00

Young people who have been buying appetite suppressants over the counter at pharmacies to stay awake for studying and for nightclub parties will have to make another plan from now on.

They may no longer purchase products like Thinz and Eatless without a prescription.

The Health Department has amended the scheduling of some products containing ephedrine, pseudoephedrine and d-nor­pseudoephedrine.

Mandisa Hela of the South African Medicines Control Council (MCC) says pharmacies have six months to get their packaging in order. However, the scheduling is effective immediately.

Over-the-counter d-norpseudo-ephedrine appetite suppressants have always been schedule two medicines, but became schedule six last month.

"It’s all about public safety," Hela said yesterday. "Overseas, the rescheduling took place as long as five to six years ago."

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