National Policy to Combat Piracy of medicines and cosmetics in the final stage of approval


After having been approved in a terminating manner in the Federal Senate, on June 13, PLS 162/2011 now depends on the approval of the Chamber of Deputies. The bill that institutes the National Policy to Combat Piracy of Products Undergoing Sanitary Surveillance is focused on integrating the various governmental actions to combat product piracy that must be screened by the National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa).

Drafted by Senator Humberto Costa, the bill establishes the understanding that piracy is a crime and provides incentives for the training of specialized professionals and the education of producers, suppliers and consumers regarding their rights and duties in relation to piracy. In addition, it allows the Federal Police to investigate all counterfeiting, corruption, adulteration or alteration of products intended for therapeutic or medicinal purposes.

According to the senator, “the country has been structuring itself and presenting, increasingly, better conditions to face the challenge of preventing and combating piracy. However, strengthening the mechanisms of interinstitutional cooperation, motivating the participation of the community and health professionals, strengthening repression actions and more investments are indispensable ”.

The PLS foresees a systematic action and with integrated conduction, which will allow the improvement of the activities to suppress the piracy of medicines and other products subject to health surveillance.

However, there is still much to be done to curb counterfeiting of products subject to health surveillance in an articulated manner, according to the senator. "Today, most of the actions against piracy are done in an isolated and disjointed manner, which weakens and makes it difficult to fight this crime," says Costa.

An old phenomenon, drug piracy has intensified in recent years, stimulating the debate on the problem and on the importance of joint action by several institutions, which have mobilized themselves to face this issue. It is a complex reality, which poses a serious health risk to the population, since counterfeit drugs are potentially lethal.

The pharmaceutical industry considers the creation of a public policy to combat piracy a major advance. The executive president of the Association of the Pharmaceutical Research Industry (Interfarma), Antônio Britto, says that the entity has participated in the debates around this bill, offering evaluations and suggestions that collaborate with the text. “The initiative is another step towards the pharmaceutical market that we want for Brazil - serious, ethical and reliable”, emphasizes Britto.

For ETCO's chief executive, Roberto Abdenur, "we need more actions in the legislature like this, which is commendable, to reinforce the importance of fighting illegal trade as a practice of unfair competition".