IBSA's commitment to combat drug counterfeiting continues

06 June 2022

Back for the second year "The Insoliti Sospetti, do you really trust them?", the IBSA campaign against the phenomenon of drug counterfeiting.
The campaign, which arrived among the 6 finalists out of 84 nominations at the Digital Awards - AboutPharma Award in the category "Communication towards the citizen, the doctor and the patient", this year reinvents itself and increases in value by raising patient awareness. In fact, a real crime series of 4 episodes will be promoted to the public with social and adv campaigns, to tell the story of a gang of “unusual suspects”, notorious criminals skilled in counterfeiting drugs, hunted down by the police and incessant investigations.

Mr. Mask, Ray, Black Cap and Mrs Venice’s adventures, commented by expert clinicians, in a few minutes warn the public through a clear and effective message: pay attention to what you buy and, for your own health, do not never rely on counterfeit drugs.
The first video is dedicated to drug safety, starring Mr. Mask, an evil chemist who produces drugs without respecting good manufacturing standards. In closing, the speech by Prof. Aurelio Sessa, President of SIMG Lombardy, explains the health risks for those who buy drugs without knowing where they come from.

The falsification of drugs moves in a globalized and illegal market that thrives because it remains submerged and hardly traceable. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), in low- and middle-income countries 1 out of 10 medicines is below the manufacturing standard or is falsified1, with a turnover 25 times higher than that of drugs. 

Erectile dysfunction drug, in particular, is one of the easiest to find in unauthorized sales channels and it ranks second among the most frequently intercepted drugs by customs seizures. According to the AIFA 2018 report, they make up 60% -70% of the total counterfeit drugs in Italy.

The health risks to which citizens expose themselves without being aware of them, when using counterfeit drugs, have pushed IBSA to support the new 2022 campaign against counterfeiting of drugs.

A counterfeit drug may contain active ingredients different from the original ones, it could have them in quantities different from those declared in the package leaflets, or may not contain them at all; in any case they are medicines of poor quality and safety as production and distribution do not take place in compliance with GMP (good manufacturing practices) and GDP (good distribution rules) standards. The use of a counterfeit drug therefore entails potential health risks because of both the lack of therapeutic activity and the possible side effects.

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