Children are smart enough that they could imitate anything that comes by their way, specially things that they are curious about, warned Dr B J Perera, a reputed paediatrician.
He was speaking to a press conference held in Colombo this week to announce the introduction of a ‘Child Resistance Cap’ (CRC) for Panadol liquid preparation marketed by Glaxo Smith Kline Consumer Healthcare – Sri Lanka (GSK), a part of their campaign to help combat overdosing of medicines among children, an issue of worldwide concern.
The cap introduced is a device that has to be pushed and turned-round and handled by the parents and is difficult for little ones to open even if they get hold of the bottle. Dr Perera said that the device is not child proof but only child resistant. Therefore, he said that the marketers of this product should be extra careful in advertising the device.
He said they especially have to be careful in advertising the ‘cap’ in the television. He said that though it is more of an awareness campaign rather than an advertising campaign, if the advertising is not carefully planned when shown on TV, the wrong mode of advertising would bring in negative results when children see the way how to release the cap, they learn the method and experiment it when parents are not around.
But, he complemented GSK for taking this important step in the right direction.
He said that overdosing by children is a dangerous phenomenon encountered globally and various steps are taken globally to prevent this danger and many different types of containers have now been devised as a preventive measure.
Dr Perera said that the ‘push and turn-round’ cap is not the panacea for everything and is not 100 % safe as it is child resistance and not child proof and therefore it is best these drugs are kept out of reach of children.
He said that toddlers are curious and inquisitive and recent studies have shown that a 2-year old could imitate to open this cap. He said that in this case educating the public is important and it should be undertaken with care and responsibility.
Panadol for Children has been in Sri Lanka for over 20 years and has been consistently leading the category through innovation and it is a sugar and alcohol free formulation introduced in the 1980s. Subsequently Panadol for children worked closely with key members of the Sri Lankan medical fraternity to devise a dosage by weight regime.