China & India Prevalence

28 10 2009

China is becoming a more developed country and is a production center for counterfeit drugs. In China the reported deaths from these drugs are from 200,000 to 300,000 in one year, but these numbers are most likely higher because not all incidents are reported. Just in the year 2001 alone the Chinese closed 1,300 factories of counterfeit drugs worth around 57 million dollars. China is mass producing these drugs and sending them all over the world. Nigeria’s Health Agency called the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) says that approximately 68% of the drug market in Nigeria originates from China. Taiwan’s Criminal Investigation Bureau stated that around 9 million dollars worth of drugs were recently captured in Taipei which included cold treatments, gastrointestinal medicines, sedatives, and 210,000 unknown pills found to be of Chinese origin.

In India counterfeit drugs account for about one-third of the drugs that are produced world-wide. In 2008 it was said by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) that 75% of fake drugs in the whole world had originated from India. Nigeria is also receiving drugs from India. India is another source, besides China, for the creation of forged drugs and is responsible for the numerous killings of innocent Nigerians. In 2003 there were three fatal open heart surgeries performed on little children who died immediately after surgery. Later it was found that the adrenaline and suxamethonium, which induces muscle relaxation, were fake. Nigeria has recently threatened to ban all drugs from India, to help combat the problem of counterfeit drugs in their country. The world’s largest drug maker, Pfizer, says that they are possibly losing 2 billion dollars in a single year just in Viagra to drug counterfeiters. The main active ingredient in Viagra is being produced in India. In 2007 the sale of this active ingredient totaled 1.8 billion dollars. More than 500 patients in India and other developing countries have died due to a toxin called diethylene glycol in the forged fever medication given to children called paracetamol syrup.

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