Usually every problem related to health is called medical malaise, but that is a misnomer. In fact health care comprises tens of different industries. Collective malaise of all these is conveniently projected as medical malaise, related to doctors. Rest remain invisible, earn money and doctors are blamed. As doctor is a common universal link that is visible with patient. By an average application of wisdom, it is easy to blame doctors for everything, that goes wrong with patient.
One such problem is presence of fake medicines. If patient gets fake or low quality medicines and does not get well or gets side effects, doctor will face harassment. Whereas people involved and industry will be sitting pretty and make money.
Therefore any such step to correct Pharma –malaise should be a welcome step for doctors. Although it will be a complex issue, because of complexity involved in implementation and execution of policies. But recognition and beginning to think of the problem is also an important step.
May be a time to treat Pharma- malaise.
India’s highest advisory body on drugs will discuss a mechanism to end the menace of counterfeit medicines at a meeting on 16 May.
According to the proposal to be discussed at the Drug Technical Advisory Board meeting, consumers will be able to check whether the medicines that they have purchased are genuine by texting a unique code to be printed on the medicine’s package to a number, said two people aware of the matter, both of whom requested anonymity.
The government plans to initially build a data bank of 300 medicine brands and their consumption pattern in various parts of the country.
Drug companies will then be asked to print a unique 14-digit alphanumeric code on the package of the drug. Consumers buying the medicine can then inquire via a text message whether the code—and therefore the medicine—is genuine or not.
Pharma firms may be asked to print a unique 14-digit code on drugs’ packaging; consumers can send a text message to find out if the code is genuine or not
A government survey conducted between 2014 and 2016 had found 3.16% of drug samples it tested to be sub-standard, while 0.02% were spurious
A WHO report in 2017 revealed approximately 10.5% of medicines in low- and middle-income countries including India are sub-standard or fake
The unique identification code will help consumers avoid buying fake products. The idea is that within seconds, the person should receive a reply indicating whether the drug is legitimate.
Fake medicines lead to drug resistance in humans and cause a significant number of deaths, according to public health experts. A government survey
conducted between 2014 and 2016 to check the proportion of substandard drugs in India had found 3.16% of the samples it tested to be substandard, while 0.02% were spurious.
Significantly, even samples from big drug makers were found to be not of standard quality during the survey carried out through the National Institute of Biologicals, according to regulator Central Drugs Standard Control Organization.