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Pfizer’s constant fight against counterfeit medications

pharmacy prescription Multinational pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has upped its ante against the wide spread circulation of counterfeit drugs in the online market. According to figures published by thenational association of boards of pharmacy, online pharmacies selling spurious drugs raked in a revenue of $75 billion. Another shocking estimate, pegs the number as 100,000- the number of people losing their lives as a result of consuming counterfeit and fake medications. Pfizer is joined by its rival Eli Lilly in waging a successful battle against the counterfeit drugs. Most of the drugs manufactured with fake ingredients fall under the prescription category of drugs. Though there is no effective public policy on ground to curb this menace, governments have plunged into a lone battle against these counterfeiters. Pfizer is believed to have been greatly impacted by the circulation of counterfeit drugs, as they are world’s number one manufacturers of Erectile Dysfunction drugs like Viagra. The most annoying and worrisome truth is the entry of these counterfeit drugs into the pharmacies and hospitals of many developedand emerging economies. Perhaps, who would have ever wondered such a precarious situation? Pfizer is also fighting against the fake drugs that are being circulated in the market for dealing with anxiety .

According to Pfizer, certain south Asian countries continue to remain as the hub for such spurious pills that are circulated globally. Pfizer subjected these counterfeit pills for medical examination and was shocked to observe the remains of human fetuses in such pills. Experts on toxicology stress the importance of intelligence sharing amongst the Pharma companies. Every single pharmaceutical company should deploy former law enforcement agents as part of their efforts to collate information on counterfeiters and the information has to be made available to other counterparts too. Off late, there seems to be a tremendous cooperation amongst the pharma behemoths especially Pfizer and Eli Lily. Cialis, yet another erectile dysfunction drug manufactured by Eli Lily has witnessed growth slumps in the recent years. Pfizer is not an exception in this regard. Downfall in revenues can be partly attributed to the increasing volume of counterfeit drugs in the market.

Counterfeit drug market currently operates on a mammoth scale. And, this is what that has led Pfizer to describe this spurious industry as a transnational organized crime worth multibillion-dollar. This includes drugs for treating high blood pressure conditions too. Much in line with its rival, security experts at Eli Lilly acknowledge their company’s cooperation with the regulatory bodies in containing this crime. Precisely speaking, both these Pharma majors have increased their investments on counterfeiting so as to control it on an aggressive scale. The company’s participation in vital knowledge forums like Pharmaceutical Security Institute acts as an avenue to share crucial inputs on counterfeiters and their modus operandi, and this input was shared by a top-ranking executive of Eli Lilly. Pharmaceutical companies have started working together in terms of triggering an anti-counterfeit operations and so on, by which they can drastically bring down the cost. It seems to be that liaisoning between Pharma product manufacturers have improved to a far greater extent.

In the initial days it was anti-anxiety, and sexual impotency medicines that were the potential targets of counterfeiting. But, the scenario has changed bitterly. Even counterfeiting is done in abortion and cancer pills. Almost 90% of the online pharmacies operate outside the purview of law, and indulge in selling medicine without prescription. According to Pfizer reports, non-FDA approved drugs are even sold in the online market place. These reason for this gradual shift in the counterfeiting category can be attributed to the huge demand it commands among the masses.

With Pfizer and Eli Lilly joining hands to wage a battle against counterfeit drugs, success is guaranteed. Their hands can be strengthenedif online purchasers close ranks with them.

About Dr. Leana Wen