Medicine Quality: the harder you look the worse it gets

Roger Bate


The Minilab protocol is an excellent method of identifying falsified medicines, and two per cent (18 out of 899 samples) were falsified. However, as the data in this paper show, it considerably underestimates (by roughly 4.5%) the amount of substandard medicines in the market (roughly 12 per cent), especially among medicines made by Indian companies. In addition to considerable patient death, substandard antimicrobial medicines are likely to drive drug resistance. Policymakers should redouble efforts to identify and combat such medicines.

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