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Medical News and Perspectives
April 3, 2013

IOM: Curbing Fake Drugs Will Require National Tracking and Global Teamwork

JAMA. 2013;309(13):1333-1334. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.2376

A national system to trace drugs from factory to patient is what it will take to keep fake drugs out of the drug supply chain, according to a new report from the Institute of Medicine (IOM).

The report was produced at the request of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to assess the global public health effect of drugs that are falsified, substandard, or counterfeit ( The report details how an increasingly globalized and convoluted drug distribution system is vulnerable to infiltration by fake products. Such products may harm or kill patients and may undermine the effectiveness of legitimate medications by promoting the emergence of drug resistance.

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