Perceived Determinants of Distribution of Counterfeit Drugs in Community Pharmacies, Calabar Municipality Local Government Area, Cross River State, Nigeria

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DOI: 10.21522/TIJPH.2013.04.04.Art054

Authors : Agada Peter Okpe, Ugobo Emmanuel Eteng


Background: The proliferation of counterfeit drugs is of public health concern and worthy of discourse.

Aim: The aim of the study is to assess the perceived factors affecting the distribution of counterfeit drugs in community pharmacies in Calabar municipality.

Methodology: This study is a cross sectional descriptive study that employed the use of closed ended pretested questionnaire for the collection of data. Data was analyzed using the SPSS 20.0.

Results: Findings show that 23(74.2%) of the respondents were males while 8(25.8%) were females. Majority of the respondents 28(90.8%) were community pharmacist, 2(6.5%) nurses and 1(3.2%) pharmacy technician. Findings show that about 58% of purchase of drugs is been determined by the medical/pharmacist representative while 42% of drugs purchased is been determine by the distributor. Majority of the respondents 19(61.3%) buy their drugs from medical /pharmacist representative. Respondents were able to detect counterfeit drugs through: customers report (19%), close scrutiny (32%), regulatory officials (13%) and news/company alerts (36%). Poverty 10(32%), greed 6(19%), heavy taxes/VAT on drugs 5(16%), government policies towards health care delivery 5(16%), and poor implementation of relevant laws by government agencies 5(16%) were factors identified as responsible for proliferation of counterfeit drugs.

Conclusion: Poverty is a significant factor responsible for the proliferation of counterfeit drugs. The most common means used by community pharmacists to identify counterfeit drugs are scrutiny and news/alerts.  There is need to create more awareness, and seek collaboration with community stakeholders in the fight against counterfeit drugs.

Keywords: Counterfeit drugs, community pharmacists, drug distribution


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