Food and drug supervisors in northeastern China's Heilongjiang Province have confirmed that 10
out of the 67 drugs they seized in a major drug crime were
counterfeit, People's Daily reported Friday.
The fake drugs, including human serum albumin, rabies vaccine,
cefalexin tablets, were sold in the rural areas of Harbin and
Mudanjiang in the province, the report cited the Food and Drug
Administration of Heilongjiang as saying.
Fake drug manufacturers were said to have first bought drug
packages from southern China and then fabricated stamps of
legitimate drug companies, as well as the drug production warrants,
the report said.
The report said that 198 people in Mudanjiang have already used
the fake drugs. Another 199 have used the counterfeit drugs in
Luzhou City, Sichuan Province.
The report didn't say what side effects those people who used
the fake medicines would suffer.
The administration, in collaboration with Mudanjiang City's
police and health departments, is now carrying out raids at drug
markets in the city's rural areas. The provincial health authority
also released an urgent notice to its subordinates, requiring an
immediate check of drugs to ensure they were safe.
China tightened inspection of pharmaceuticals to improve drug
safety and prevent corruption in the approval process after the
state's former top drug regulator Zheng Xiaoyu was executed on July
10 for taking bribes and allowing substandard medicines onto the
Zheng, 63, was found guilty of taking 6.49 million yuan
(US$850,000) in bribes and dereliction of duty. He was said to
"have sought benefits" for eight pharmaceutical companies by
approving drugs and medical devices during his tenure as China's
chief drug and food official from June 1997 to December 2006.
Six types of medicine approved by the administration under
Zheng's leadership were later found to be counterfeits.
(Shanghai Daily August 10, 2007)