Friday, May 02, 2003

Curiouser and Curiouser

I took a look at the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 today. I wanted to find out whether the Therapeutic Goods Administration might have dealt with Pan's quality control failures without suspending the company's licence for 6 months. Section 40, Subsection 2 looked promising:

(2) The Secretary may, by notice in writing given to the holder of a licence, impose new conditions on the licence or vary or remove existing conditions.

I'm not sure whether this means that the TGA could have made it a condition of Pan's licence that they replace their entire senior management or submit to a period of outside administration but either of those possibilities strikes me as being preferable to the licence suspension.

I vaguely intended a longish, "well-considered" blog on the topic, but I got derailed by the latest revelation about Pan's bizarre corporate culture:

The theft of a million cold tablets from Pan Pharmaceuticals two years ago led to a security upgrade at the embattled pharmaceutical company, a NSW Health spokeswoman said today.

The theft of the cold and flu tablets, which can be manufactured into amphetamines valued at tens of millions of dollars, from the Pan factory at Moorebank at the end of March 2001 is currently the subject of a police inquiry, NSW Health said.


The spokesman [sic] confirmed the tablets, contained in eight packing pallets, were left on an external loading dock on the night of the robbery.

She also confirmed a large external floodlight was not working on the night of the theft and a security camera had been disabled.

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