Qatar is working on the first counterfeit drug law in country, announced the Qatar’s Supreme Council of Health’s Pharmacy and Drug Control Department (PDCD).

PDCD director, Dr Aisha Ebrahim Al Ansari, said that the law is currently being reviewed and will be adopted and submitted to higher authorities for approval, reports The Gulf News.

“The risks of taking counterfeit medicines are that they may not contain complete active ingredients being used by pharmaceutical companies or they may contain a lot of these active ingredients or wrong ones. It is also unhealthy and often manufactured in sites other than the licensed and registered, and is manufactured using equipment below health standards. All these constitute a clear threat to life,” said Dr. Al Ansari.

Dr. Al Ansari said that determining the size and extent of the counterfeit drug problem is difficult in Qatar because it requires cooperation between health authorities, pharmaceutical companies, and consumers, among others. Consumers need to have greater awareness of the threat posed by counterfeit drugs on their health and safety, she continued.

By S. Imber