Counterfeit ‘Lifestyle’ Drugs Uncovered in Indonesia

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What: Counterfeit drugs, including antibiotics, contraceptives and blood pressure medications were seized in Indonesia. Counterfeit lifestyle drugs including whitening creams and erectile dysfunction medications were also found.

When: March 17, 2009

Where: Towns across the islands of Java and Sumatra in Indonesia.

Additional details:

The Jakarta Globe reports that after a three-month investigation, the Center for Drugs and Food Investigation in Indonesia discovered “several fake medicines,” across the country’s island towns.

Among the seized counterfeits were antibiotics, contraceptive injection drugs, antifungal medicines, as well as lifestyle drugs including whitening creams and drugs for erectile dysfunction and weight loss.

On March 17, Indonesia food and drug officials said the drugs were being analyzed to determine the source. Officials are concerned that this seizure is “just the tip of the iceberg” and that the findings are part of a larger, deadly drug trade.

The chairman of the Indonesian Pharmacists Association (ISFI) said the majority of counterfeit drugs in Indonesia are distributed through small pharmacies without proper distribution licensure. The chairman also said there were currently more than 16,000 different brands of drugs in Indonesia, crowding the market and leading some manufacturers to sell products through illegal chains.

The executive director of the International Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group (IPMG) said that “the existence of counterfeit drugs has become a serious problem in Indonesia,” and in conjunction with the ISFI, the National Food and Drug Administration (BPOM) has set up a Web site to raise public awareness about counterfeit drugs.

Related sources:

“Raids Uncover Counterfeit Drugs,” Jakarta Globe. March 17, 2009.

National Agency of Drug and Food Control. Retrieved April 28, 2009. This Web site is most frequently updated in Indonesian.

STOP Web site for counterfeit drug awareness (Indonesian). Retrieved April 28, 2009.