Thursday, May 21, 2009

Keeping It Real Report reveals 700,000 Die Each Year from Counterfeit Drugs

Do you think that the counterfeit drugs issue is a small issue? Think again! In poorer countries they can account for as much as half of the supply chain and they claim an estimated 700,000 lives a year. In addition, their very use can undermine the effectiveness of the legitimate drug, thus adding research time and dollars to its list of victims.

A report issued this month from the International policy network gives a good overview of the problem of counterfeits in poorer nations. Below is a some highlights of an article by Franklin Cudjoe from IMANI Health on the report:

Counterfeit drugs kill over 700,000 people every year - new report

A new report from the International Policy Network and sponsored by IMANI Center for Policy & Education details the shocking burden of fake drugs in less developed countries. Fake tuberculosis and malaria drugs alone are estimated to kill 700,000 people a year. That's equivalent to four fully laden jumbo jets crashing every day.

The report lays bare the ballooning problem of counterfeit and substandard drugs, which can constitute one third of the drug supply in certain African countries. These dodgy drugs result in unnecessary death and increased levels of drug resistance.

The report highlights more shocking evidence, such as:

• Nearly half the drugs sold in Ghana, Nigeria, Angola, Burundi, and the Congo are substandard

• About two thirds of artesunate (anti-malaria) drugs in Laos, Myanmar Cambodia and Vietnam contain insufficient active ingredient.

The entire article can be viewed at:

May 2009 report can be viewed at:

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