Among the many obstacles the world had to overcome amid the COVID-19 pandemic included a rise in counterfeit medical devices, which included counterfeit pharmaceuticals, N95 masks, and unapproved COVID-19 test kits, along with many other types of products and equipment.
In March 2020, as Covid-19 spread around the world, many essential medical products fell into short supply. Surgical masks, and other PPE, were particularly hard to come by, with existing supply chains buckling under this unprecedented strain.
Medical device companies rose to the challenge admirably. But they weren’t the only ones producing supplies. That month, a global operation by Interpol, dubbed Operation Pangea XIII, seized some 37,000 counterfeit medical devices, most of which were surgical masks. Counterfeit pharmaceuticals were rampant too, including products like the dubiously named ‘corona spray’.
“Once again, Operation Pangea shows that criminals will stop at nothing to make a profit. The illicit trade in such counterfeit medical items during a public health crisis shows their total disregard for people’s wellbeing or their lives,” said Jürgen Stock, Interpol’s Secretary-General.
Read the full article at Medical Device Network.