Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany
Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany

Counterfeit pharmaceuticals

Our medicines and pharmaceutical products meet the highest standards when it comes to safety, environmental sustainability and ethical practices. We take numerous steps to ensure this ethos. But our sense of responsibility extends far beyond our own products - we also aspire to help solve global issues by contributing our expertise. Take for instance the fight against counterfeit pharmaceuticals in developing and emerging countries. According to Interpol estimates, up to 30% of all medicines in these regions are counterfeit or substandard. In an effort to identify counterfeits quickly and easily, the Global Pharma Health Fund (GPHF), a non-profit initiative funded by Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, has developed the GPHF Minilab™.
The GPHF Minilab®: Help that fits in a suitcase
The GPHF Minilab™: Help that fits in a suitcase
The GPHF has specifically developed the Minilab for use in regions with simple infrastructure. This compact, portable lab fits into a tropics-resistant suitcase and enables counterfeit medicines to be detected quickly, easily and inexpensively. The tests do not rely on external power sources and require only ordinary drinking water. There is currently no other product like it.
Using the Minilab, we can test whether pharmaceuticals contain the correct concentration of the indicated active ingredient (API). We’re working to improve the Minilab by increasing the number of APIs that they can screen. At the beginning of 2016, new methods were introduced for five active ingredients. This brings the total number of testable APIs to 80, ranging from antimalarials and antibiotics, to analgesics and antipyretics.
The GPHF generally provides its Minilabs at cost, but in 2015 the organization donated seven kits to various African countries. In 2015, we likewise donated seven GPHF Minilabs™ to nations in Africa. In partnership with international organizations, the GPHF also trains local healthcare professionals how to use the test kit.


Publication of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany.
There are two different, unaffiliated companies that use the name MERCK. Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, which operates this website, uses the firm name “Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany,” in the United States and Canada, and also uses “EMD Serono” in biopharma, “MilliporeSigma” in life science and “EMD Performance Materials” in materials business. The other company, Merck & Co., Inc. holds the rights in the trademark MERCK in the United States and Canada. Merck & Co. is not affiliated with or related to Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, which owns the MERCK trademark in all other countries of the world.   To reflect such fact and to avoid any confusion, certain logos, terms and business descriptions of the publications on this website have been substituted or modified, such as by referring to “Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany” instead of “Merck” standing alone.  Publications on this webpage, therefore, slightly deviate from the otherwise identical versions accessible outside the United States and Canada.
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