Categories: MSP in Practice
MSP in Practice: MSP are jointly developing a system for identifying falsified medical products
Counterfeiting medical products causes thousands of preventable deaths. In a 2-year project, the MSP Gavi and the Globale Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria worked with government agencies, medical device manufacturers, companies and other partners to develop a system that makes it easier to identify these falsified products.
The counterfeiting of medical products, especially in low- and middle-income countries in Africa, represents an increasing danger. For example, counterfeit medicines have caused up to 169,000 deaths of children under 5 years old suffering from pneumonia and up to 116,000 deaths in the treatment of malaria. The COVID-19 pandemic has further increased the spread of falsified and substandard vaccines and related products.
Identifying these counterfeit medical devices is extremely important to ensure that trust in medical devices and healthcare systems is not reduced. The MSP Gavi and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, together with UNICEF, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, USAID, government agencies from Nigeria and Rwanda, Vital Wave and the World Bank, have developed the “Traceability and Verification System (TRVST)”. This system is the result of a 2-year project in which state and private sector actors, as well as manufacturers of vaccines and other development partners worked together across areas.
The system enables users such as health care workers or supervisory authorities to scan medical products using an app and check their authenticity in real time. Any suspicious activity triggers an alert that is sent to the relevant manufacturers and regulators. According to Thabani Maphosa, Managing Director at Gavi, the TRVST initiative will help improve care planning and provide safe and effective vaccines and other healthcare products. The system is currently available in Nigeria and Rwanda. Other states joining the initiative are currently being identified.