Pharmaceutical International News - August 2012
$180m Worth Of Chinese Counterfeit Drugs Seized
Posted by Paul Fiddian - Pharmaceutical International's Lead Reporter on 06/08/2012 - 06:05:00
The Chinese Ministry of Public Security has taken possession of approximately $180m worth of counterfeit drugs and detained close to 2,000 people.
This massive fake drug haul follows a campaign, carried out around China, that's been clamping down on the spread of counterfeit medications. Among the drugs seized were illegal cancer treatments and drugs that purported to able to treat skin diseases, hypertension and diabetes, to name but three.
Data published by the International Policy Network - a think-tank based in London - labels China as a major counterfeit drug producer.
In 2008, 80 US residents died after taking a drug called heparin and hundreds more experienced severe side effects. An investigation subsequently carried out by the US Food and Drug Administration revealed that the issue lay with contaminated ingredients, supplied by sources in China.
Chinese Drug Seizures
Recent years have seen regulators take strong action against the perpetrators of the counterfeit drug market and the latest Chinese drug seizures represent the latest example of this.
Five years ago, the director of the country's food and drug agency was sentenced to the death penalty after it was found he'd been accepting cash bribes in return for allowing lethal drugs to enter the supply chain.
Drug sales have become especially problematic, too. In many Chinese provinces, bidding systems are in place through which drug firms compete with each other to meet pharmaceutical or hospital contacts at the keenest possible price. In some circumstances, this has had a knock-on effect on quality. For example, four months ago, 13 drugs were removed from the market after it was found that they contained chromium.
Chinese Counterfeit Drugs
More recently, rigorous standards have been introduced in an attempt to tighten the leash on Chinese counterfeit drugs.
The arrests and drug seizures, though, don't mark the end of the Chinese Ministry of Public Security's efforts by any means. Rewards are now being offered for any information that leads to further arrests and counterfeit drug possessions. According to the New York Times, these rewards have a value of up to $8,000.
‘The crime of making fake drugs is still far from eradicated, and criminals are coming up with new schemes, becoming craftier and better able to deceive', the Ministry of Public Security explained, in a statement.
Image copyright Chlaborewan - Courtesy Wikimedia Commons. Image used solely for illustrative purposes and does not necessarily represent this article's subject matter
Recently Added News
US firm Eli Lilly ends its LY2886721 Alzheimer's disease drug treatment trial after uncovering potentially worrying liver damage evidence
Previously-applied morning-after pill age limits are being lifted in the United States, meaning women young and old will now be able to obtain it, prescription-...
A compound initially meant to provide addiction relief might also be able to help post-traumatic stress disorder victims, according to the results of new resear...
Drugs used to treat Alzheimers disease may safeguard against heart attacks and even death, according to researchers in Sweden.