China eases rules on cheap drug imports to fight chronic diseases

New York Times

27 August 2019 - China said it would reduce the penalties for the sale and import of unapproved drugs, effectively giving poor and critically ill patients the green light to get cheaper generic pharmaceuticals from other countries.

The move, announced on Monday, could help fill a gaping hole in the country’s overburdened health care system. For years, Chinese patients and their relatives risked the threat of heavy criminal penalties in their hunt for affordable drugs in a country increasingly suffering from chronic diseases like cancer.

In the most desperate of cases, relatives of these patients have resorted to making their own cancer drugs at home using raw pharmaceutical ingredients that they have found online.

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Michael Wonder

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Michael Wonder