Amelie Persson

Substandard and falsified medical products, a threat to public health. A study of counselling in first line healthcare

Substandard and falsified medical products are a threat to public health with risk of no effect as well as toxic effects. Antibiotics is the most frequently reported group of drugs to WHOs global surveillance and monitoring system for substandard and falsified medical products. This means an increased risk for antimicrobial resistance.

One third of the world’s population lack access to good quality medicines. This is a real threat to global health. Lack of access to good quality medicines increases the market for falsified drugs. The Swedish population mainly encounters falsified drugs through purchases on the internet. Earlier studies show that the majority do not know how to identify a website approved to sell drugs. A study of Swedish emergency doctors and general physicians shows that more knowledge is required about falsified drugs. Another important player on the pharmaceutical arena are the pharmacy staff. Today their knowledge of falsified drugs is unknown.

To increase the knowledge about falsified drugs in first line healthcare, including the pharmacy staff.

Initially a digital questionnaire to the pharmacy staff will be conducted. This questionnaire will be followed by in-depth interviews to gain more information about the state of knowledge. Based on this an education package will be developed, aimed at primary care and pharmacy staff.

We do not want the public to buy drugs from unauthorised websites by mistake. We believe that increased knowledge in first line healthcare, including the pharmacy staff, about falsified drugs decreases that risk. We also believe that increased knowledge in first line of care will contribute to a safer assessment of patients.


Lund University

Main Supervisor: Patrik Midlöv, Professor