Counterfeited Pharmaceuticals: How Harmful They Actually Are?
Many of us have heard about counterfeit pharmaceuticals: that someone somewhere sells harmless and cheap medication. You might even have encountered some of these sellers. However, the problem is way more severe than it is pictured. It’s not only some minor vendor who sells homemade herbal lotion, but it’s also a massive industry that tricks people into buying fraudulent drugs and risking their health and even lives. Counterfeit pharmaceuticals statistics show that fraudulent sales cost approximately 200 billion euros every year globally.
You might be surprised how well counterfeiters camouflage fake drugs. With new technologies, it’s simple to recreate identical packaging, shape, and color of real medication. Therefore, it increases the risks of flooding the market with dangerous counterfeited drugs. The fraudulent market uses not only professionally reproduced packaging but also deceptive methods to sell medications and attract customers. For examples, most of the vendors operate online and use ads or spam emails to promote fake pharmaceuticals. As a result, many people can’t spot the difference, and they get involved in a hazardous activity and make anticounterfeit stand even harder.
Authorized pharmaceutical manufacturers are suffering from counterfeiters due to the loss in revenue and customers’ trust. However, the biggest threat is facing people who buy and use fake drugs, as their well-being and lives are put in danger. This relentless problem inspired us to write this article and dig deeper into counterfeit pharmaceutical production and possible harms.
How Can Counterfeited Pharmaceuticals Harm You?
Pharmaceuticals and personal care products go through many check-ups and regulations before they reach pharmacies and shops. These verifications help to determine quality products from invalid ones. Thus, only the best quality medication ends up in our bathroom cabinets. On the other hand, counterfeited drugs don’t go through authorized audits, and thereby can cause threats to one’s life and health.
In the best case scenario, fake pharmaceuticals don’t work because they don’t contain active elements. However, it can get way worse when instead of legit ingredients they are replaced by toxic parts or wrong active components. Not to mention, dozes of particular substances can be wrong and cause worse side effects. A horrifying case happened back in 1995 in Niger, when 2 500 kids died due to fake and inefficient vaccines during the meningitis outbreak.
These disturbing examples are one part of the bloody market. Counterfeit pharmaceuticals are a worldwide problem and affect many areas of our lives. Yet, the question appears: how these drugs get through such high regulated control and what could we do to reduce the level of the harmful activity?
How Can We Fight the Counterfeited Pharmaceutical Market?
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