Volume 43, No. 02, Month APRIL, Year 2016, Pages 63 - 67

Health consumer protection officers’ perspective toward the problems and the mechanism of consumer protection involving health products in upper northern thailand

S. Karnwareetip, A. Surawichai, yongyuth Ruanta

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The objective of this study is to examine the problem and the mechanism of consumer protection involving health products in upper northern Thailand from the health consumer protection officers’ perspective. This qualitative study enrolled key-informants by purposive sampling and snowball technique from pharmacists who were responsible for consumer protection task. There were nine interviewees altogether, including seven pharmacists who worked at the provincial health office from Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Lamphun and Lampang, and two pharmacists who were the food and drug inspectors at the checkpoint in Chiang Rai. The data were collected and collated through in-depth interviews, which were being held during June 2013 to September 2013 and were analyzed by content analysis. The key-informants consist of 7 men and 2 women. Seven key-informants have been working in the field of consumer protection for more than 10 years. The health authorities stated the problem related to health consumer protection in 5 aspects; 1) unawareness and authority-depending of consumers 2) impact of excessive advertisement and mass communication 3) Lack of legal knowledge and ignorance of entrepreneur 4) limitations of authorities and responding organizations 5) the gap in consumer protection law and regulations. They also focused on consumer protection mechanism concerning pre-marketing control, post-marketing control and consumer empowerment rather than law enforcement. In conclusion, the perspective of health authorities was to focus on consumer protection by using various mechanisms other than law enforcement. They realize that consumer problems involving many aspects as well as the limitation of the authorities and their organization. Finding solution for those problems is still challenging.


Consumer protection, health products, health officer, consumer problem, pharmacist


Published by : Faculty of Pharmacy, Mahidol University
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