A US advocacy group says Chinese crack down on counterfeiters is starting to work and that new Beijing unit will help.
The Partnership for Safe Medicines – a not for profit campaigning group whose members include PhRMA and the WHO – gave its review of the situation late last month at the launch of its PSM China initiative.
PSM China Bai Huiliang chairman said: “China’s resolve in protecting its citizens from the dangers of counterfeit drugs has yielded great results and shows tremendous potential for the future.”
He cited the Chinese Government’s August arrest of 2,000 people suspected of being involved in the production of fake drugs and its seizure of $182m worth of counterfeits as evidence of the progress being made.
Huiliang added that: “With the help of our partners, PSM China will support the Chinese Government’s efforts to enhance drug safety and improve public health.”
PSM China will focus on raising awareness of the potential harm caused by fake drugs and on informing patients, physicians, manufacturers and distributors of these dangers. The group will also teach people how to spot fake drugs.
The launch was welcomed by Eli Lilly CEO John Lechleiter who said: “The biopharmaceutical industry applauds the PSM China initiative as an innovative solution to protect patients and improve drug safety.”
“Make no mistake: pharmaceutical counterfeiting – and drug safety in general – is not China’s problem, or the task of any one country. It is a shared global public health priority, and, therefore, a domestic concern in the United States, EU, China, and many other countries all over the world. And one resounding lesson is that we can all benefit by working together.”
PSM China is the second international initiative the US advocacy group has established.
In December 2010, the organisation set up PSM India. In September the Delhi-headquartered group announced that it has entered into a collaboration with the country’s Government and the World Health Organisation (WHO) focused on finding “an effective mechanism to ensure patients safety prevail over commercial interest and regain consumer confidence in the existing supply chain.”