31 C
Monday, May 27, 2024

How counterfeit drugs have become a major public health threat

Counterfeit pharmaceuticals may also increase health-care expenses because patients may require additional therapy to deal with the potential side effects of ineffective or harmful treatments.

India’s pharmaceutical business is third in the world in terms of volume. Nonetheless, there have been several reports of counterfeit pharmaceuticals and treatments entering the market. Internationally and in India, the pharma sector has been battling with difficulties linked to counterfeit or spurious pharmaceuticals for a time now; however, they have been accentuated following the epidemic. To enhance India’s reputation as the “Pharmacy of the World,” all stakeholders must collaborate to guarantee that challenges such as counterfeit pharmaceuticals do not tarnish this image.

Counterfeits Endangering Pharma’s Reputation

COVID-19 created enormous disruptions in global supply chains, causing nations all around the world to struggle to get life-saving pharmaceuticals. One of the associated factors was that the epidemic hastened the introduction of online marketplaces for the buying of drugs and other pharmaceutical items.

The expansion of such online marketplaces has improved client convenience, but it has also allowed a bigger number of counterfeit or sub-standard items to escape unnoticed.

According to a study issued by the non-profit Authentication Solutions Providers’ Association (ASPA), which promotes anti-counterfeit awareness, the number of incidents of substandard and falsified (SF) medical goods grew by 47% between 2020 and 2021.

Counterfeit pharmaceuticals and their distribution are damaging to the expansion of the pharmaceutical business, which can only thrive on quality and confidence.

The recent incidents of inferior pharma goods resulting in fatalities have the potential to seriously impair the country’s reputation as a pharma exporter, and it is past time for us to take the necessary actions to protect India’s image in the global pharma environment.

Concerns for Public Health

Substandard products in all industries are a commercial reality everywhere, including India. The potential for life-threatening injury distinguishes pharma counterfeiting.

Falsified medications may promote drug resistance and lead to treatment failure, in addition to increasing morbidity and death. Fake pharmaceuticals endanger the user’s health, but they also hurt the pharma industry’s brand, operations, and revenue.

The World Health Organization (WHO) also estimates that counterfeit and substandard pharmaceuticals cause over one million deaths every year, costing the worldwide economy $21 billion. Pharmaceutical items account for 8% of India’s total merchandise exports and 2% of its gross domestic product (GDP).

To realise India’s aim of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat,’ it is critical to protect India’s image as a recognised, trustworthy provider of pharmaceutical products.

The Road Ahead

All stakeholders, including consumers, must keep an eye out for substandard and counterfeit pharmaceuticals in the greater public health interest.

The Indian pharmaceutical sector should focus on developing effective communication collaterals to instill caution in customers. Concerned government organisations should also aggressively promote patient safety and awareness programmes through strategic media usage. Anti-counterfeiting procedures at industrial sites are critical.

Manufacturers should embrace blockchain-based pharma solutions to enable greater quality control throughout the value chain, including vendors, distributors, bottling and packaging, and retailing. Every year, India exports pharmaceutical items valued more than a trillion rupees.

The worldwide pharmaceutical sector is anticipated to rise to more than $2.4 trillion by the end of 2029, up from $1.40 trillion at the end of 2021. With such a huge number currently travelling to various overseas territories, and more expected in the coming years, the industry should take note of previous, regrettable instances and prioritise anti-counterfeit measures as soon as possible.

For latest Bollywood Update Follow us on Instagram & Watch on Youtube


Related Articles

Latest Articles