By Brian Mayo, Life Science Leader magazine
While the pharmaceutical industry struggles with counterfeiting and adulteration of drugs, most of the proposed solutions focus on track-and-trace methods, like 2-D bar codes, holograms, RFID devices, and pedigrees. Each of these methods adds a level of authentication to the outside of the packaging containing the product.
Over time, so many variations of these have spread throughout the industry, which now screams for standardization. The evolution of track-and-trace technologies has become so complex that the industry is almost in analysis paralysis. Even with a myriad of anticounterfeiting choices, counterfeiting is expected to rise to $75 billion next year. One needs a daily scorecard to just keep up with the progress that is going on with anticounterfeiting methods, and many websites, such as www.securepharmachain.blogspot.com, do exactly that. Maybe the industry should instead just step back a bit and take a completely different perspective on the same problem. Management training has drilled into our brains to “think outside the box” to come up with the best solution to our problems. Perhaps it’s time we stop thinking outside the box and start looking inside the box for the best solution.