Emilia Szyling, Damian Świeczkowski, Urszula Włodarczak, Miłosz J. Jaguszewski, Jerzy Krysiński, Piotr Merks

Leki sfałszowane w opinii pacjentów polskich aptek – jednoośrodkowe badanie pilotażowe

Falsified Medicines in the opinion of Polish patients in community pharmacy – one centered pilot study

The pandemic of falsified medicines still remains one of the most important challenges for the public health and patient’s safety, both from global and more local perspective. Moreover, this phenomenon is also observed in the welldevelopment countries and apart from illegal distribution chain, we may find several proofs of falsification in legal distribution. In light of this observation, European Union introduced new legal framework – Falsified Medicines Directive which should be understood as the common effort of all members aimed at minimizing dangerous referring to counterfeit medicines.

The aim of the study was to evaluate the patients’ perspective on falsified medicines, particularly in the context of a non-typical way of distribution, e.g. Internet purchasing.


Our research is an example of non-interventional, cross-sectional and one centered study. An authorial questionnaire was a proper research tool. The data were collected in one, selected community pharmacy in central Poland. In general, research was based on the quantitative approach. In addition, we collected socio-demographic data.


We involved 110 respondents, including a slightly larger percentage of women (55%). Respondents lived mostly in an urban area - city/town up to 20 thousand inhabitants (71%) or rural areas (21%). Almost half of the respondents had no opinion referring to the phenomenon of falsification of medicines in Poland (41%). The vast majority of respondents agreed with the statement that falsified drug does not contain an active pharmaceutical ingredient (49%). Most respondents believed that falsified medicinal products contain misrepresented information about the manufacturer or the Marketing Authorization Holder, and, these drugs are produced, stored and transported under inappropriate conditions. Moreover, the vast majority of participants (77%) disagreed with the statement that falsified drug is safe, 17% had no opinion, however, 6% of research population believed that this kind of drug is safe. Nevertheless the answer “definitely yes” was provided only by one participant. The majority of respondents thought that purchasing medicinal products in community pharmacies is safe, and these drugs are definitely not falsified.


The respondents are not aware of the risks associated with the scale of falsification of medicinal products and the impact of falsified medicine on the human body. Thus, representative research and those based on qualitative approach are warranted.

Keywords: Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD), falsified medicines, community pharmacy, pharmacist.

© Farm Pol, 2017, 73(2): 84-91