The primacy of public health considerations in defining poor quality medicines

There is growing, but belated, concern that much of the developing world's supply of medicines—in particular, its supply of anti-infective drugs—is of poor quality. This constitutes a major public health problem because the high prevalence of poor quality drugs in developing countries results in avoidable morbidity, mortality, and drug resistance. Moreover, any efforts to improve public health by developing new medicines or by changing treatment policies will ultimately be pointless if the drugs patients actually take contain insufficient or incorrect ingredients.