If you’ve ever been sick, you know how much of a pain it can be to get the right medication. But what if that medication turns out to be fake? The growing prevalence of counterfeit medicine is a serious problem for the health and well-being of people all around the world.
From April 2020 to April 2021, the U.S. government seized 9.5 million counterfeit pills, as revealed by the Drug Enforcement Administration. This number is more than the combined figures for the previous two years. That’s a lot of potentially dangerous medicine that’s making its way around the world, and it’s only going to get worse if we don’t do something about it.
What can we do? Well, there are several ways we can tackle this problem for better health.
Know Where Your Medications Come From
As the world becomes more connected, it also becomes easier to get your hands on almost anything. That’s why it’s now easier than ever to receive counterfeit medicine instead of authentic drugs approved by government agencies. Moreover, counterfeit medicine is mostly sold by unregulated and non-licensed sellers who are motivated to generate wealth through these fake means.
According to the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, 96% of the 11,688 internet pharmacies did not adhere to U.S. federal or state laws. The figure makes it essential for you to know where your medications come from so that you can avoid buying fake drugs.
Here are three ways you can spot fake pharmacies:
- Look for the Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites (VIPPS) seal on the pharmacy’s website, which indicates that they have passed an evaluation by a third party and meet certain standards for online pharmacy practice.
- Make sure that any online pharmacy is licensed in its jurisdiction and has a valid license number on its website.
- Use an independent website to check for bad reviews or complaints about the pharmacy and report any problems that arise from using an online source.
Check for Unusual Labeling and Packaging Inconsistencies on Your Prescription
When it comes to pharmaceuticals, it’s important to be vigilant. There are many different ways that counterfeit medicine can make its way into your hands, and it’s up to you to be smart about how you protect yourself and your family.
Counterfeit pharmaceuticals may have unusual labeling or packaging inconsistencies, so check for these when you get your prescription filled. You should also insist on buying from a trusted source, a pharmacy that has been around for a long time and is well-known in the community.
Another thing you can do is look for the expiration date on your medication. Most drug companies use cleanrooms while manufacturing their drugs in order to ensure safety. But some counterfeiters will try to pass off expired products as still safe by altering the expiration date on the packaging.
Some manufacturers use reliable cleanroom providers like American Cleanroom to ensure consistency in their labeling and packaging so that customers know exactly what they’re getting when they make their purchase.
Consult Your Doctor Before Consuming Any Drug
If you’re taking any medication, it’s important to consult your doctor before consuming it. That’s because no matter how much we try to protect ourselves from counterfeit medicines, some still slip through the cracks.
According to the WHO, nearly 2 billion do not have access to needed medicines, vaccines, and medical devices. That creates an opportunity for people with ulterior motives to introduce substandard and falsified products, and that can have serious consequences for your health.
Counterfeit drugs are medications that are made in unauthorized facilities and sold as if they were real drugs. They can be harmful or even fatal for those who take them. Counterfeit medicines have been found to contain insufficient amounts of active ingredients, no active ingredients at all, or harmful substances like pesticides or industrial chemicals.
If you have a prescription for a medicine or drug, be sure that you consult your doctor before consuming it. Your doctor will know if there are any dangers associated with taking this medicine or if there are any interactions with other medications that you may be taking.
Protect Yourself and Your Family by Being Aware of the Dangers of Counterfeit Drugs
If you’re like most people, you probably don’t think about counterfeit medicine very much. But as the problem continues to grow, it’s important to be aware of the dangers and take steps to protect yourself and your family.
The good news is that there are things you can do to help combat this growing threat. With the above-mentioned ways, it will become easier for you to tackle the problem of counterfeit medicine.