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IFPMA joins campaign against fake medicines

Pharma body teams up with other global health organisations
Fight the fakes medicines

Global trade body the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations (IFPMA) has joined a host of health organisations working to protect patients from fake medicines.

Launched on November 26, the Fight the Fakes campaign aims to create 'a global movement of organisations and individuals that will speak up about this threat to public health'.

In addition to the IFPMA, the campaing's partners include the International Council of Nurses; the International Institute of Research Against Counterfeit Medicines; Medicines for Malaria Venture and the NCD Alliance.

The remaining organisations are the Fondation Chirac; the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; World Heart Federation; World Medical Association; and the US Pharmacopeial Convention.

Together the partners will work to creating behavioural change by educating people about the dangers of buying medicines from illegal sellers and to push for tougher sanctions and more effective enforcement against providers and facilitators of counterfeit medicines bought online.

The campaign will collect and sharing the stories of those affected by fake medicines, and its website will provide resources for both organisations and individuals, including opportunities for action and examples of best practice.

People are increasingly turning to the internet for their medicine purchases, seeing online sales as cheaper and faster.

According to the campaign, however, more than 50 per cent of medicines purchased worldwide from online illegal sources are counterfeit.

Of 81 countries inspected by Interpol, 48 were identified as sources of counterfeit products in 2011. While the problem is global, people in poorer countries are more likely to look online for cheaper medicines and are therefore at greater risk of buying fakes.

This is not the first bid to halt counterfeiting. Earlier campaigns have been fronted by the Center for Safe Internet Pharmacies - a group including Google, Yahoo and Microsoft - and the US FDA with its BeSafeRx campaign.

Article by
Tara Craig

28th November 2013

From: Healthcare

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