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EU vows to cut fake pharmaceuticals

New legislation from the EU aims to address the increase in the number of dangerous counterfeit drugs making their way across Europe

New legislation from the EU aims to address the increase in the number of dangerous counterfeit drugs making their way across Europe.

Under the new rules, all pharmaceuticals in the EU will be traceable from the point of manufacture to the pharmacy. This will also include active ingredients that are sourced from outside the EU, ensuring they are produced to the same standards as EU-sourced ingredients.

Previously, the 27 member countries were used to transit counterfeit medicines to third world countries. Now, they are the targets for these substances. Switzerland produces more counterfeit drugs than anywhere else in the world. The use of the internet has lead to an increase in ordering of fake therapies, most notably Viagra, by EU residents.

Consumers are also set to benefit from new regulations to improve how changes to medicines are registered, ensuring they benefit more quickly and receive better information about the latest versions of drugs.

The legislation will also ensure that consistent procedures apply to medicines placed on the market across the EU, covering processes such as the updating of patient leaflets. 

22nd October 2008

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