By Mark Eaves
In recent years the production of, and trade in, falsified medicines – both research based and generic – has grown to become a global illegal business. At the borders of the EU alone over 30 million counterfeit medicines have been seized during the last five years, and the statistics regarding medicines supplied online are equally disturbing: according to the European Alliance for Safe Medicines, 62% of medicines purchased online are fake or substandard.
These medicines increasingly threaten patients’ health, because counterfeiting is no longer largely associated with ‘lifestyle’ medicines such as Viagra. Today life-saving medicines such as those designed to treat cardiovascular disease are increasingly being counterfeited.