- International cooperation:
Joint operations are generally carried out by the World Health Organisation (WHO), the World Customs Organisation (WCO), and Interpol. These operations have two advantages: they are extremely effective and thanks to their magnitude, they attract the attention of the media and thus the general public.
Record number of falsified medicines seized, the dismantling of transnational criminal rings, the closing of illegal pharmacies on line and off, these major operations prove the effectiveness and the need for collaboration between the different sectors and organisms affected by the traffic of falsified medicines.
The latest example is Operation PANGEA VII, carried out between May 13 and 20, 2014. It is considered the largest operation carried out at the global level in the battle against falsified medicine.
For more information: www.interpol.int/fr/Crime-areas/Pharmaceutical-crime/Operations/Operation-Pangea
- Aid programs for States:
Developing countries, poor countries, those that are destabilized by ethic and political conflicts or by corruption are among the countries most affected by the scourge of falsified medicine.
Programs to help develop health systems and to organize the fight against falsified medicines exist and are offered to these countries with the help of organizations such as the World Health Organisation (WHO) and/or economically developed countries
- The WHO’s Good Governance for Medicines (GGM) program:
Launched in 2004 in 4 Asian states, it has rapidly become a reference in the fight against corruption in the pharmaceutical sector and has been implemented in a total of 26 states. Its 3 step approach can perfectly adapt to the needs of each specific country, all of which have benefited from the uninterrupted support of the WHO’s experts throughout the program. (The report can be consulted here: GGM Program)
- The Council of Europe’s Strategic Approach:
The Council of Europe published a booklet in 2013 aimed at providing interested parties (heads of State, police, customs, health professionals) the keys to act and organize the fight against falsified medicines in their countries. (The Counterfeiting of medical products and similar crimes, European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines and HealthCare, 2013)
- Training health professionals:
The issue of falsified medical products is completely absent from the medical curriculum in France , as well as countries that are more deeply affected, such as those in Africa.
In many developing countries, it is the common curriculum for health professional that is deficient, sometimes inexistent; which leads to the breakdown of health systems in terms of both the quality of medication offered and the number of health professionals per inhabitant.
Training health professionals well is a key element in the battle against falsified medicines.
The Pierre Fabre foundation has been working towards this goal since the 2000s by rehabilitating the pharmaceutical departments in Phnom Penh (Cambodia) and Vientiane (Laos) and the creation of a Mékong Pharmamasters’s program (for Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam) to improve the training of pharmacists in these countries and to reinforce the number of medication specialists in South East Asia.
For more information: www.fondationpierrefabre.org