Global access to quality-assured medical products: the Oxford Statement and call to action

19 November, 2019

Dear HIFA colleagues,

CITATION: Global access to quality-assured medical products: the Oxford Statement and call to action

Paul N Newton, Katherine C Bond, on behalf of the Oxford Statement signatories

Lancet Global Health VOLUME 7, ISSUE 12, PE1609-E1611, DECEMBER 01, 2019

Published:December, 2019DOI:


Substandard and falsified medical products (including medicines, vaccines, biologics, and diagnostics1) represent a significant and growing threat to human health. Substandard medical products result from errors, corruption, negligence, or poor practice in manufacturing, procurement, regulation, transportation, or storage. By contrast, falsified products result from criminal fraud. Although substandard and falsified medical products have been traded for many centuries, in the last few decades the problem has grown with the increased complexity of the global pharmaceutical economy and internet sales...

A systematic review and meta-analysis3 estimated that 12·4% of antibiotics and 19·1% of antimalarials in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs) were substandard or falsified, with an estimated economic impact ranging from US$10 billion to $200 billion...

In September, 2018, the first international Medicine Quality and Public Health Conference was held at Oxford University, UK, to discuss opportunities and solutions to ensure that all people have access to affordable and quality-assured medical products...

The Oxford Statement on Medicine Quality and Public Health

Building on growing evidence of the prevalence and impact of substandard and falsified medical products, it is time to make access to quality medical products an immediate global priority and encourage research informing policy and implementation...


Read the full statement here:


1. One of the calls for action is an area where HIFA may be able to contribute: 'Education of health workers, policy-makers, and the public on the importance and eimpact of quality-assured medical products, safe procurement, and distribution, and incorporation of these elements into pharmacy, nursing, and medical curricula.'

2. I would be very interested to hear of any HIFA members who are signatories to this Statement. Is there potential to organise a complementary Statement on 'Access to reliable information to prescribe and use medicines'? The HIFA working group on Prescribers and Users of Medicines is ready to help organise this if support can be identified.

Best wishes, Neil

Joint Coordinator HIFA Project on Information for Prescribers and Users of Medicines

Let's build a future where people are no longer dying for lack of healthcare information - Join HIFA:

HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is coordinator of the HIFA global health campaign (Healthcare Information For All - ), a global community with more than 19,000 members in 177 countries, interacting on six global forums in four languages. Twitter: @hifa_org FB: