Thursday, August 6, 2009

COMBATING THE SPREAD OF FAKE DRUGS

In the June 28, 2009 Online Issue Daily Policy Digest, the National Center for Policy Analysis highlights a very relevant policy document titled, "Keeping It Real: Combating the Spread of Fake Drugs in Poor Countries" by Julian Harris, Philip Stevens and Julian Morris of the International Policy Network.

XStream endorses the primary assertion that one of the most effective ways in combating this international problem is for the private sector of the pharmaceutical supply chain to take advantage of its innovative capacity to experiment with various technological solutions that enable it to protect the identity of its products. Members of the pharmaceutical supply chain need to utilize a variety of technologies, like XStream’s XT250 solution which allows the end user to verify and authenticate medications inside its sealed manufacturer’s unit of sale container without destroying or degrading the material.

The text of the Daily Policy Digest review on "Keeping It Real":

Counterfeit and substandard drugs are a serious and growing problem around the world -- especially in less developed countries. These fake drugs pose three direct threats to patients: failure to provide effective treatment; adulteration with toxic chemicals, often leading to death or injury; and if a drug contains some active ingredient but too little to kill all the disease agents, it can lead to the emergence of drug resistant strains of disease.

These problems are caused in large part by a combination of defective legal systems and government-imposed distortions of the pharmaceuticals market, say researchers at the International Policy Network:

Poor countries tend to have highly inefficient, slow and expensive legal systems, which makes it very difficult for people to be assured of the quality of the medicines they purchase.

Lack of enforceable trademarks and civil liability are instances of a wider problem; in such an environment, legal decisions tend to be arbitrary and designed to benefit the elite.

Price control measures, like tariffs, on imported medicines are very common in poor countries and drive up the price of high quality medicines creating opportunities for suppliers of fakes, who can then more easily undercut them.

Tariffs can also lead to unnecessary delays in ports, where improper storage conditions can cause drugs degrade.

However, bolstering the rule of law is a long term process in many countries. In the short-term, the private sector should take advantage of its innovative capacity to experiment with various technological solutions that enable it to protect the identity of its products. Governments, meanwhile, should reduce those interventions which undermine the supply of quality drugs, such as taxes, tariffs, price controls and other arbitrary regulations, say researchers.

Source: Julian Harris, Philip Stevens and Julian Morris, "Keeping it Real: Combating the spread of fake drugs in poor," International Policy Network, 2009.


The National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public policy research organization, established in 1983. The NCPA's goal is to develop and promote private alternatives to government regulation and control, solving problems by relying on the strength of the competitive, entrepreneurial private sector.

To read the entire piece by Harris, Stevens and Morris, follow the link below:
http://policynetwork.net/uploaded/pdf/keeping_it_real_2009.pdf

2 comments:

Julian H said...

Many thanks for linking to our paper.

If anyone would like to get in touch regarding our work on this subject please leave a comment (or e-mail address) here and I'll respond.

Thanks again.

Proud to be said...

dear,

i am doing work as an independent worker against fake and counterfeit medicines in pakistan.

If u need help or any information then dont hesitate & feel free to contact with me.

Thanks

Proud TO Be A PAkistani...

waragainstcounterfeiting@gmail.com