WASHINGTON — Healthcare Distribution Alliance (HDA) president and CEO Chester “Chip” Davis, Jr., released the following statement in response to CNBC’s reporting on counterfeit medications and the role of pharmaceutical distributors.
“Unfortunately, today’s CNBC special report entitled ‘Fraud in the Bottle’ paints too broad a brush about the pharmaceutical supply chain. The reporting does a disservice to law-abiding primary distributors who work every day to safely, efficiently and reliably deliver millions of medicines to patients across the country. HDA was not contacted by CNBC for the story.
“The fraudulent companies identified in the piece are not members of HDA. Thousands of wholesale distributors are licensed by state and federal authorities in the United States — yet only 35 meet the stringent membership requirements of our organization. In fact, HDA members worked directly with Gilead to identify the fraudulent activity referenced in the piece.
“HDA and our distributor members have had a long-standing, well-established commitment to preventing counterfeit medicines from entering the U.S. supply chain. A key part of that commitment has been championing stronger licensure standards across the country and at the federal level. HDA members primarily distribute products purchased directly from 1,500 pharmaceutical manufacturers and have careful controls in place to ensure only legitimate products are delivered to the licensed healthcare providers who ordered them.
“To strengthen an already secure supply chain, HDA and our members played a central role in the creation of the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) in 2013, which changed the way pharmaceutical products and their associated data move in tandem through the supply chain, increasing safety and security for patients and setting a new framework for national uniform licensure standards. The systems and processes implemented across the supply chain over the past decade have enhanced the Food and Drug Administration’s ability to protect U.S. consumers by improving identification and removal of potentially dangerous products from the pharmaceutical supply chain. HDA and our member companies are collaborating with manufacturers and pharmacies to complete the last phase of DSCSA implementation in 2024.
“CNBC’s reporting is an oversimplification of a complex issue, but we share the concerns about bad actors and compromised products entering the legitimate supply. The pharmaceutical distribution industry is committed to knowing their suppliers and customers and working with regulators to root out illegitimate entities and counterfeits, and ultimately, ensure every patient can rely on the healthcare delivery system by receiving the medicine they were prescribed.”