[Ip-health] news: article dashboard- Public Health, Not Drug Patents, At Issue As Counterfeit Medicines Grow

Terri - Louise Beswick Terri at haiweb.org
Mon Jun 28 03:06:37 PDT 2010

Public Health, Not Drug Patents, At Issue As Counterfeit Medicines Grow


Counterfeit drugs are a growing problem around the world, particularly
in developing countries where patients are the most vulnerable. Voice of
America highlighted this serious public health issue, which was raised
at a recent meeting of the WHO's World Health Assembly. Reporter Vidushi
Sinha discusses the dangerous consequences when counterfeiters attempt
to circumvent drug patents, and the steps that some government and
advocacy groups are taking to combat this problem. 


Below is an excerpt from this important article.

"Last month, representatives from all over the world discussed the
dangers posed by counterfeit medicines at the World Health Assembly in
Geneva. The problem is growing. The World Health Organization (WHO)
warns that more than half of all medicines bought online are
counterfeit. U.S. experts say there is no one solution. 

Last year, 84 infants died in Nigeria from tainted teething syrup. More
than 2,000 times last year, counterfeit medicines caused illness and
death, according to the Pharmaceutical Security Institute, a watchdog
group. That's an increase of more than nine percent over 2008. 

Scott LaGanga, director of PhRMA, a leading pharmaceutical research and
manufacturing company, says it's easy and profitable to sell look-alike,
low quality drugs. "We are not all experts. And so we trust the supply
chain to deliver the right product," he said. "In a lot of the parts of
the developing world this trust could be broken and because it's become
so profitable to distribute, sell, manufacture, a lot of these products
that are of low quality, and substandard."


By: Mark Grayson


The Global Health Progress <http://www.globalhealthprogress.org/>
initiative brings research-based biopharmaceutical companies and global
health leaders together to protect and improve health in the developing
world. Learn more about drug patents
as-Global-Threat-95780054.html> .



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