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Counterfeit Medicines

Volume 210: debated on Tuesday 30 June 1992

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many instances of counterfeit medicines reaching the United Kingdom market have been reported to the Medicines Control Agency in each of the years 1989, 1990 and 1991; and if she will state by what means those counterfeit products were detected.

There was one instance in 1989 and one in 1990. Both instances were reported to the Medicines Control Agency by pharmaceutical companies, and arose from inquiries made by those companies.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether she has any plans to introduce new measures to reduce the risk of counterfeit medicines being introduced into the United Kingdom.

There are no plans to introduce new measures. Any reports of alleged import of counterfeit medicines into the United Kingdom are immediately investigated by the enforcement unit of the Medicines Control Agency. The United Kingdom licensing system introduced by the Medicines Act 1968 and covering the import, sale and production of medicinal products is continually kept under review to ensure appropriate safeguards against counterfeit products are maintained.