OMG! This is so freaky, if you’re using FRESHLOOK lenses… please have them checked! They might be FAKE!
The Health Sciences Authority confiscated over 100 boxes of counterfeit coloured contact lenses after raiding five optical shops across the island. More than 10 people are also being questioned in connection to the case.
This is the first case of counterfeited health products being sold by legitimate suppliers such as licensed optical shops. Previous cases had always been restricted to the black market.
The counterfeits were fraudulently labelled as “FreshLook ColorBlends” Contact Lenses from CIBA VISION and found to be unsafe and of poor quality — for instance, the solution in which the lenses are packed were tested and determined to have been contaminated with a harmful bacteria, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, which is known to cause serious eye infections. HSA was alerted to the distribution of counterfeits by CIBA in mid June this year, and is stepping up its surveillance activities in optical shops. No action has been taken against any of the shops as of now as HSA says it will wait for the conclusion of the investigation.
Investigations are still ongoing but HSA is issuing a warning advisory to customers as these contact lenses are still in circulation, and the packaging for the counterfeit is very similar to the actual thing. Consumers are advised to look out for spelling errors in packaging, and to report any discomfort to their doctors and optometrists. Any persons found supplying counterfeit medical devices such as contact lenses are liable to a penalty of $100,000 and/or a jail term of up to 3 years if convicted.
Please email The Straits Times if you have encountered problems with this product. Members of the public who are aware of counterfeit health products being sold are encouraged to contact HSA’s Enforcement Branch at Tel: 68663485.