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In a developing country like Ghana, the last thing public health officials want to deal with is a major condom recall. But that’s what’s happening amidst the HIV epidemic. Ghanian health officials said they have seized more than 110 million of the 200 million Chinese-made condoms recalled because they have microscopic holes. Yes, holes.
A spokesman for the Ghana Food and Drugs Authority said all imported condoms are supposed to be inspected prior to being disbursed but for an unknown reason these were not.
Officials said the defective condoms come in a silver and white package with a red AIDS ribbon and the words “BE SAFE” written on them, said FDA head Thomas Amedzro.
“Somehow there was a lapse; the batches of the condoms were not submitted as duly required for the appropriate testing to be conducted,” he told.
The condoms, about 200 million in total, were imported from Kenya and distributed to health groups as part of an anti-HIV/AIDS program and were made by an unidentified Chinese manufacturer. Officials said they’ve reclaimed 110 million of the condoms so far. Quality latex condoms are a good way to reduce the risk of sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy when used correctly and consistently.
Anyone using them could be at risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease or unwanted pregnancy. It’s also unclear if the condoms were distributed to other African nations. An investigation us underway to determine the manufacturer according to officials.
Public health officials conservatively estimate 230,000 of Ghana’s 25 million citizens are living with HIV.