Apr 2015

WHO to ignore powerful producers of substandard medicine

The World Health Organization just posted its new report on inferior medicines (http://apps.who.int/gb/ebwha/pdf_files/WHA68/A68_33-en.pdf). It is called the member state mechanism (MSM) report on Substandard/spurious/falsely-labelled/falsified/counterfeit medical products - SSFFC for short. This report is the culmination of multiple meetings of health bureaucrats to finalize how to combat inferior medicines. Or rather that is what one hoped for when the SSFFC process began a few years ago. But the reality is that this interim report does not advance the effort far and instead of reporting to, and demanding action at, the World Health Assembly this coming May, it has postponed doing so until 2017.

Perhaps worst still one can see the hands of the usual suspects in this interim report – notably India. It should be remembered that India was the reason that the anti-counterfeit IMPACT initiative of WHO was scuppered a few years ago. It’s not that the Indian government wants the world flooded with inferior medicines, but it doesn’t want anything that will undermine the rapid growth of its generic drug industry, some of whom play fast and loose with the rules on drug manufacturing. Read Moreā€¦
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