#DidYouKnow? 96% of online pharmacies operate illegally
The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene released on 20 April 2015 a special supplement that includes 17 articles on falsified and substandard medicines. This special issue, titled, “The Global Pandemic of Falsified Medicines: Laboratory and Field Innovations and Policy Perspectives,” covers a range of findings on the state of substandard medicines around the world. Several articles suggest policy interventions, including an international framework and the adoption of stricter national laws against drug counterfeiting.
The study titled Counterfeit Drug Penetration into Global Legitimate Medicine Supply Chains: A Global Assessment (Authors: Tim K. Mackey, Bryan A. Liang, Peter York and Thomas Kubic) by University of California, San Diego -School of Medicine and the Pharmaceutical Security Institute, assesses counterfeit reports involving the legitimate supply chain using 2009–2011 data from the Pharmaceutical Security Institute Counterfeit Incident System (PSI CIS) database that uses both open and nonpublic data sources.
This study has been supported by Fight the Fakes partners International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) and Pharmaceutical Security Institute (PSI). The abstract of the study can be found below:
Counterfeit medicines are a global public health risk. We assess counterfeit reports involving the legitimate supply chain using 2009–2011 data from the Pharmaceutical Security Institute Counterfeit Incident System (PSI CIS) database that uses both open and nonpublic data sources. Of the 1,510 identified CIS reports involving counterfeits, 27.6% reported China as the source country of the incident/detection. Further, 51.3% were reported as counterfeit but the specific counterfeit subcategory was not known or verifiable. The most prevalent therapeutic category was anti-infectives (21.1%) with most reports originating from health-related government agencies. Geographically, Asian and Latin American regions and, economically, middle-income markets were most represented. A total of 127 (64.8%) of a total of 196 countries had no legitimate supply chain CIS counterfeit reports. Improvements in surveillance, including detection of security breaches, data collection, analysis, and dissemination are urgently needed to address public health needs to combat the global counterfeit medicines trade.
This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
About the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Continuously published since 1921, AJTMH is the peer-reviewed journal of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, and the world’s leading voice in the fields of tropical medicine and global health. AJTMH disseminates new knowledge in fundamental, translational, clinical and public health sciences focusing on improving global health.