The pedigree is a record in electronic form containing information regarding each transaction resulting in a change of ownership of the given prescription drug, including returns. Automatic identification technologies such as barcoding and RFID have been shown to be dependable and effective and in fact, RFID technology has been identified and recommended by the FDA as a reliable option for carrying electronic pedigree information.
According to the California Department of Consumer Affairs Board of Pharmacy, “Counterfeit prescription drugs are a worldwide problem, reaching as high as 30 percent of the supply in some countries. The World Health Organization estimates that in developed countries, counterfeit drugs are less than 1 percent of the market.” In other words, “3.4 billion prescriptions were dispensed in the US in 2006. If 1 percent of this supply is counterfeit, this would mean that perhaps 34 million of these US prescriptions were filled with counterfeit medicine.”