Street side pharmacies dominate downtown Kingston Featured

Gossip & Rumours Written by  Thursday, 04 August 2016 02:30 font size decrease font size increase font size 0
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SEVERAL street-side vendors are involved in a lucrative "open air pharmacy" on the sidewalks of downtown Kingston. They provide prescription drugs to persons who want to avoid going to a doctor to get medication for an illness.


The illegal trade has left the health sector baffled about how so many different kinds of prescription drugs could have found their way on the street side, and concerned about the health risk involved in the abuse of these drugs.

On sections of West Queen Street, downtown Kingston, and in the vicinity of pharmacies in the busy commercial hub, vendors display prescription drugs along with regular wares on their stalls.

The vendors have stockpiled a wide range of products from skin-lightening creams to antidepressants to antibiotics.

"The practice is very popular and the vendors have a host of prescription drugs on their stalls. They sell steroidal cream, vaginal inserts for thrush, ampicillin (red-and-black tablets), amoxicillin, sleeping pills, Retardin (cinchocaine) for men with a premature ejaculation problem, and antibiotics for yeast infection," said a pharmacist who works in downtown Kingston, and spoke on condition of anonymity.

"I have even seen men peddling the ampicillin and other antibiotics in transparent plastic bags on the wire-things that you see the peanut vendors with. It is quite blatant, they sell right in front of the pharmacies," the pharmacist said.

According to eyewitnesses, even schoolboys have been known to purchase medication to deal with sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or to enhance sexual performance. Young men and young girls buy the stronger types of bleaching cream.

When one876 visited the area last week, several boxes of steroidal creams such as Betnovate (betamethasone) and Dermovate (clobetasol) were seen on display on various stalls, as well as Canesten for certain vaginal infections, and Retardin cream.

One man was seen with a batch of the "infamous red-and-black pills", and he advertised that he also had stocks of the "gungo" or the "boom" (Anafranil), which is an antidepressant, sometimes used by local men to delay orgasm.

"These drugs may be addictive, and it may induce persons taking them to consume larger doses just to get a similar effect," the pharmacist said.

At pharmacies in downtown Kingston, Betnovate cream costs $247, and ointment $249. Dermovate cream $346 while the ointment goes for $328. Canasten cream costs $290 while the vaginal tablets cost $390. Retardin costs just $152.

On the streets, the prices are quite competitive. A reporter was able to purchase Betnovate cream which costs $250, Dermovate cream which costs $350, one dozen ampicillin capsules which cost $300, and Canesten vaginal tablets costing $500. The Canesten cream costs $300.

Antidepressants like Anapranil, the "gungo", costs $300 per half-dozen, and "stone" costs $100 per chunk.

Read 2736 times Last modified on Wednesday, 03 August 2016 20:33

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