July 19, 2011

Health issues are always a cause for concern, and these days people use the internet to study conditions on their own, so they can be more informed, in addition to learning from their doctor. In the Philippines, poverty and corresponding health conditions are an all too common concern and part of daily life. Often inappropriate diets in the province (resulting from poverty) or hectic lives in the bustling capitol of Manila leave no time for staying healthy. In short, health problems continue to be a major problem in the Philippines and now Philippines private detectives have uncovered even more bad news. Scams involving face medicines are growing.

Asian countries in the Pacific have ancient believes that certain herbs, plants and animals have medicinal value and since they come from Mother Earth they should be harmless to the human system. In most cases, this is excellent advice and a proven way to stay healthy. However, where there are special herbs and holistic medicine, there are often fraudsters trying to sell some magic pill or snake oil that will cure just about anything. In fact, Manila based private investigators, in coordination with the NBI (National Bureau of Investigation), recently uncovered a scam ring that operates in southern China, Malaysia and the Philippines. It was a well established criminal scam operation providing customers in the region and abroad with drugs that are supposed to have natural components based in ancient recipes with instant miracle results: substantial weight loss in a short time, member enlargement and erections that last much more longer, pills and creams that rejuvenate years in seconds, lose streaks or eliminate cellulite, shampoos that stop loss hair and capsules that increase the ability of the mind and nervous system for better performance of the mind and body. All these cures sound good and promising, and with a low price, why not try them. This is precisely how the criminal group has been able to sell absolutely worthless “remedies” to thousands of people in Southeast Asia and abroad. Capsules and creams in some cases would be water, juice, sugar or even cheap creams repackaged and named.

Philippines private investigators urge consumers to be skeptical, read ingredients labels, and check with their local health department or doctor for an opinion about the herbal drug or supplement. Look for reputable brand names that have a proven track record. The scams are especially harmful because often people who buy the fake medicines are very ill and don’t have money to spare, so they end up getting sicker, with even less money to feed and take care of themselves. Often the natural medicines are bought out of desperation, and criminal take advantage.

Experts say the criminals are effective marketers, and they send spam emails, advertise their false miracle medicine on social networks like Facebook and even Twitter and, in some cases, even pay for TV ads, not only in the Philippines but all over the Malay Archipelago. An NBI spokesperson said, “these scammers take advantage of the need people have to recover, feel better, be healthy, and that is really sad, because victims threaten their health and even their lives.”

The components of these so called medicines have been exported from Malaysia into the Philippines, China and South Korea. The last big scam is “The Tuko” in which the drug comes from the use of organs and skin of the little reptile known as the gecko and supposedly can cure serious illnesses like AIDS, asthma, cancer, tuberculosis and even impotence. According to the NBI, “the cost of 300 grams of Gecko is $1,160 USD and the Health Department in the Philippines is really concerned of the big scam locals are facing, because geckos do not cure, and people are asking for credit loans to be able to pay for this medicine, putting themselves in real danger.”

William J. Carter, VP of Private Investigations at Philippine PI™, says the best advice is to go to a doctor and get serous treatment, be well informed about the threats of the internet and always be skeptical about anything that seems to be a miracle fix, or too good to be true. “If you’re considering taking a new drug, or making a purchase from a new herbal company or supplier, do you research, and consider a Philippines background check to be sure you know what you’re getting. Not knowing can be costly to your pocket book, and can have serious health consequences,” says Carter. Be skeptical, especially when it comes to your health.

All the best,

S. Birch
© 2011 S. Birch

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