Counterfeit Drugs: The Silent Epidemic
Originally posted on Do No Harm:
A third of malaria drugs in the world are counterfeit. These are the findings of the Lancet Infectious Diseases research (reported by BBC here). These findings spur concern because counterfeit malaria drugs not only make the treatment of malaria not effective but are also likely to cause drug resistant malaria strains. This problem, however, is not limited to malaria drugs.
As much as 15% of medicines in the world are counterfeit thus causing 100,000 deaths worldwide according to the WHO. The increase of counterfeit drugs across the world in the last decade is both a consequence and a symptom of one phenomenon: the globalization of drugs production and distribution. The supply chain of medicines has become increasingly fragmented and scattered across the globe with raw material extraction taking place in one country and ingredients synthesis and formulation in another country. This globalized supply chain has two implications:
1. It makes the…
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