We usually depend on the medicines prescribed by doctors when we fall ill, with the hope of getting cured. Unfortunately, sometimes medicines you buy are adulterated. Yes, it is true. According to the study conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly 35% of counterfeit drugs sold all over the World come from India and also 20% of drugs sold in India are counterfeit. If 20% of medicines sold in India are fake, there are high chances that the tablets you take for a cold or a headache might be fake or of poor quality.
Fake medicines are those which either contain the wrong quantity of active ingredient, the wrong active ingredient, none of the mentioned active ingredients or the right active ingredient with the wrong dose. Fake medicines also include expired ingredients that have been relabeled. It’s very difficult even for health care professionals to identify fake medicines.
1. Lack of access to medical facilities, especially in rural areas.
2. Due to the supply chain which has a lot of participants.
3. Lack of awareness among the consumers.
4. Genuine medicines are quite expensive.
Genuine medicines are manufactured very carefully. The active ingredients of medicines are clearly specified and measured. A slight change in composition can have a significant effect on health. So it is very important to consume only genuine medicines. Here are the common side effects of consuming fake medicines.
Consuming fake medicines can worsen the health condition of patients and can lead to allergic reactions. Other common side effects of consuming fake medicines are vomiting, diarrhea, breathing difficulty, organ failure and so on.
It is very difficult to differentiate fake medicines from the genuine ones. However, here are some ways which can help identify fake medicines.
The medicines should be packed neatly and there should not be any spelling mistakes or grammatical errors on the packing. If medicines are badly packed and there are many errors in the writings/description on the package, there are chances it might be fake.
The expiry date of the medicines should be clearly mentioned and the details provided on the outer cover should match the inner cover.
The information provided in the leaflets should be in the language the medicine was advertised.
The medicines should be in good condition and they should not be discolored or degraded. If medicines look unusual they might be fakes.
The dosage of the medicines should be the same as prescribed by the doctor.
You will soon be able to check if medicines bought are genuine or not just by sending an SMS or WhatsApp message. The pharmaceutical companies are planning to print 14-digit unique codes on their best-selling products. This code is unique for each unit sold. The product label will also contain the mobile number provided by the company.
If you message this 14 digit unique code to the contact number provided, you will get complete details like name and address of the manufacturer, the batch number, and manufacturing and expiry date.
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