Many compelling reasons present themselves to oppose the spread of counterfeit drugs. Fakes represent theft of millions upon millions of dollars of value, undermine international protection of intellectual property, and its damage often redounds — unjustly — to pharmaceutical companies.

And counterfeits kill. This article in The American, the magazine of the American Enterprise Institute, documents the death that counterfeits spread throughout the developing world. Author Roger Bate, an AEI fellow, focuses on the harm afflicting Nigerians, especially those suffering from malaria. Not only do their diseases go untreated when they buy fake drugs, adulterated or diluted pharmaceutical dosages help diseases build drug resistance, endangering entire populations.

By Carter Wood

24 October 2007

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