Shanghai’s first intelligent retail pharmacy supervision and management platform was launched in Xuhui District on Wednesday. It will collect and report real-time sales details of drugstores and identity information of buyers.
It will help stamp out irregularities concerning sales of special medicines and alert authorities in real time, according to the Xuhui District Administration for Market Regulation, which developed the platform.
Some special medicines contain the stimulant ephedrine, which can be used as a component for narcotic drugs. So monitoring the sales of these special medicines is important, the administration pointed out.
Shanghai’s anti-drug regulations call for real-name registration of buyers of special medicines and limit the quota of those containing ephedrine sold to them. Pharmacies must report to drug authorities if they spot an unusually large number of purchases exceeding normal medical demand.
The platform, covering all 152 retail drugstores in the district, connects reporting or sales terminals and can access customers’ purchase information, as well as the name and amount of medicines they buy.
Through the police’s population database, the platform can automatically read the identity information of buyers and uses facial recognition to block loopholes in identity authentication.
“The platform limits the amount of special medicines a person can buy per day,” said Wang Fang, director of the drug supervision and management department of the administration.
“It will alert authorities and police in case there are multiple purchases at multiple venues, as spotted via real-time collection and matching and reviewing of sales figures of special medicines,” she added.
“Currently, we rely on our staff to check the name and ID card of buyers of special medicines, and register the information of their purchases manually,” Chen Yiliang at the Huifeng Focitang pharmacy said.
“It is difficult to spot fake information or frequent buyers,” he noted.
The platform will also monitor pharmacists and alert authorities to the presence of unlicensed drugstores.
“We are also updating the platform so that it will be able to monitor the temperature of drugstores and alert authorities when an abnormal situation is spotted,” said Gao Wuming, deputy director of the administration.