Sabtu, Oktober 27, 2012


How to identify fake medicines

KOTA KINABALU 26/10/2012: Consumers are reminded to check on the labels of medicines and cosmetics as well as authenticity of registration to avoid consuming unregistered products which may harm their health.

The State Health Department Pharmacy Enforcement Division yesterday organised a dialogue on registered medicine products, notificated cosmetics, and regulations on advertising medicinal products and services for staff of See Hua Marketing Sdn Bhd.

The dialogue opened with a presentation on the basics of medicine, how to differentiate genuine medicines from fake ones, and also on the do’s and dont’s of medicinal products and services advertising.

In his presentation, Tan Xin Rong of the enforcement division explained how to spot fake medicines from genuines by looking at the registration numbers, and scanning the Hologram Meditag labels on the medicines, with a special type of scanner available at government hospitals, clinics and pharmacies.

“One way to identify fake medicines and products from genuine ones is by looking at the registered numbers.

Registered products contain registration numbers of the alphabetical code ‘MAL’, followed by eight digit numbers, and followed by either

  • ‘A’ for controlled medicines,
  • ‘T’ for traditional medicines and
  • ‘X’ for non-poison or over-the-counter (OTC) medicines.

He advised consumers who encounter medicines or other related products which may be suspicious of their registrations and authenticity, to report to the division by calling 088-231609 or 088-231610, or email to

Consumers can also check the authenticity of the products’ registration and notification through the National Pharmaceutical Control Bureau website,

According to the division, those found guilty of marketing or possessing unregistered medicinal products can be fined not more than RM25,000 or jailed for three years or both, for individuals, and RM50,000 for corporations under the Sales of Drugs Act 1952.

by Amy Dangin

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