WHO Global Surveillance and Monitoring System for Substandard and Falsified Medical Products
(2017; 73 pages)


WHO’s new surveillance system was developed after it became clear that globalized production chains and the increasing interconnectedness of the medical products market would be a game changer in oversight of the medicines supply chain. No country or region working alone could easily collect all the information it needed to respond rapidly to threats from substandard and falsified medicines. Building on an initiative developed in the WHO Western Pacific Region, the GSMS was born.

The system aims to work with WHO Member States to improve the quality of reporting of substandard and falsified medical products, and, importantly, to ensure the data collected are analysed and used to influence policy, procedure and processes to protect public health, at the national, regional and the global level.

This report has grown out of the work of the GSMS, which provides national regulatory authorities with an interconnected network. This allows them, for the first time, to cross-reference reports of suspect products with those reported from other regions by searching the WHO database and accessing photograph libraries of confirmed substandard and falsified products.

This report is published together with a WHO Study on the public health and socioeconomic impact of substandard and falsified medical products which examines published surveys of the quality of medicines from the past decade to provide overall estimates on the scope, scale and harm.

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