The Partnership for Safe Medicines
Weekly UpdateJune 28, 2010
In This Issue
Top News
World News
Article Headline
Quick Links
More About Us
Join Our Mailing List
Follow us on Twitter
Partnership for Safe Medicines (PSM) Commends White House On Counterfeit Drug Provisions in U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Plan

Washington, D.C. (June 22, 2010) - Scott LaGanga, executive director of the Partnership for Safe Medicines, released the following statement regarding today's rollout of a joint strategic plan by the U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator (IPEC) that includes provisions to address counterfeit prescription drugs:

"The report released today is both a step forward and a reminder of the need for public and private sector leaders to work together to combat the worldwide counterfeit drug epidemic. For all the valued access the Internet provides, it is also a place where dangerous, criminal and life-threatening activity is permitted. For this reason, the IPEC report couldn't be more timely.

"Regulation of counterfeit drugs sold online must span numerous channels, including social media. Platforms like Facebook must ensure vague advertising guidelines are replaced with concrete policies that keep out untrustworthy drug retailers - a policy that should be replicated by search engines where misleading advertisements often infiltrate top-tier result pages. Micro blogging outlets like Twitter should employ the 'verification' seal of approval used for celebrities and public figures to serve as a stamp of credibility for outlets selling medication.

"The Partnership for Safe Medicines commends the efforts of the Administration to include online pharmacies in IPEC's latest plan, as well as tactical approaches like the establishment of a Counterfeit Pharmaceutical Interagency Committee and increased enforcement activities on the part of government officials. Collaboration with IPEC to coordinate and implement proposed policies is not only wanted but needed. We look forward to stepping to the plate to do our part to change this dangerous counterfeit culture."

About PSM:
Comprised of more than 60 non-profit organizations, the Partnership for Safe Medicines is a public health group committed to the safety of prescription drugs and protecting consumers against counterfeit, substandard or otherwise unsafe medicines.
Top News

United States: White House Aims to Crack Down on Counterfeit Products


Last week Tuesday, the federal government unveiled a wide-ranging strategic plan to protect intellectual property and confront governments that fail to crack down on piracy. "Piracy hurts, it hurts our economy, it hurts our health and safety. We need to protect our citizens from unsafe products (such as) counterfeit pharmaceuticals," said Vice President Joe Biden said in releasing the 61-page plan drafted by several government agencies. "Counterfeit drugs are a scourge and our consumers aren't safe. And they don't know what they're buying online many times...It's time for [companies] to step up, it's time to stop supporting ads for drugs sold illegally over the Internet -- and for a simple reason: for the public health of American -- of our population," Biden stated. ("US Unveils Strategy to Fight Piracy of Intellectual Property," Agence France Press, June 23, 2010; Story here)

Click here to see video of the Vice President's comments.

World News

Canada: Regulators Warn of Counterfeit Tamiflu


A drug being advertised on the internet as "Generic Tamiflu" is a hoax as it actually contains antibiotics instead. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the pills which contain a white powder could pose a health risk to anyone allergic to penicillin. The fake Tamiflu being sold on the internet does not contain the proper active ingredient. Instead, it contains an antibiotic, cloxacillin, which is in the same class of drugs as penicillin. ("Fake Tamiflu poses health risk," CBC News, June 18, 2010; Story here)



United States: Few Overseas Testers Inspected by the FDA - HHS


According to a new report from the Health and Human Services (HHS), while most of the drugs entering the U.S. market in 2008 were tested overseas, the FDA only inspected 0.7 percent of foreign clinical trial sites. This report raises concerns about the lack of US government oversight into thousands of foreign clinical trials for drugs sold in the United States. ("Report Raises Concern over Foreign Drug Trials," CBS News, June 22, 2010; Story here)



WCO Secretary Vows to Fight Counterfeit Drugs


Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of the World Customs Organization, signed a declaration on Thursday, June 24th, demonstrating his group's commitment to crack down on the counterfeit drug industry. "Countries across the globe, in particular those in Africa, suffer the scourge of being flooded with fake and sub-standard medicine," Mikuriya said during his address at the signing ceremony. Malaria tablets, heart treatment medication and H1N1 vaccines are among the drugs being sold in counterfeit form. ("WCO Signs Declaration, Vows To Crack Down On Counterfeit Drug Industry," Global Health, June 25, 2010; Story Here)



Anti-counterfeiting Americas (Boston, USA)
When: Wednesday, Sep 8, 2010
Where: Boston, USA
Description: Link here

PSM's Inaugural 2010 Interchange
When: Friday, Oct 8, 2010
Where: Washington, D.C.
Description: The Partnership for Safe Medicines invites you to save the date for an intimate conference bringing together patient groups, providers, pharmaceutical company quality experts, enforcement personnel, policymakers, regulatory agency experts and other interested parties to discuss key issues around counterfeit drugs andother unsafe medicines. Link here.
About the Partnership for Safe Medicines
The Partnership for Safe Medicines is a group of organizations and individuals that have policies, procedures, or programs to protect consumers from counterfeit or contraband medicines. For more information, please visit