Objectives To assess the prevalence of counterfeit anthelminthic medicines in Cambodia, and to determine influential factors.
Methods Commonly used anthelminthic medicines were collected from private drug outlets. Medicines were carefully observed including their registration labelling, and their authenticity was investigated with the manufacturers and the Medicines Regulatory Authorities. Samples were analysed by High-Performance Liquid Chromatography at the National Health Product Quality Control Centre, Cambodia.
Results Two hundred and three samples of anthelminthics were collected from 137 drug stores. Domestic products constituted 36.9%. Of 196 samples which were verified for registration, 15.8% were not registered. Of 165 samples successfully investigated for their authenticity, 7 (4.2%) were identified as counterfeit. All of these medicines were purchased in open packs or containers, and most of them were foreign manufactured and/or without registration.
Conclusion The results of our survey urge strict implementation of drug registration and vigilance on the availability of unregistered medicines to combat counterfeit medicines in Cambodia.