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Guangming Daily: Pediatric Medicine in Severe Short Supply

Guangming Daily carried an article stating that, based on the statistics that the China Pharmaceutical Industry Association released, out of 6,000 pharmaceutical manufacturers in China, only 10 companies produce pediatric medicine. Over 90 percent of the adult medicine in China lacks a pediatric version. The delegates during the Lianghui (the annual plenary sessions of the national or local People’s Congress and the national or local committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference) that is current being held in Beijing raised this issue. The statistics that the Center for Adverse Drug Reaction Monitoring released show that 10.5 percent of the reported cases in 2014 were related to children 14 years or younger. Parents often complaint that there is a severe shortage of the pediatric version of the medicine on the market and it has forced the parents to use adult medicine and estimate the dosage to give their children. The article quoted statements that a few delegates made. They attributed the cause of the shortage to higher research costs, a lack of economic return and parents being unwilling to put their children through clinical trials. The article said that the delegates feel that it has become an urgent matter to resolve the pediatric medicine shortage issue for the 200 million children in China. They proposed that the State institute special drug and tax incentive policies on pediatric medicine in order to motivate the Pharmaceutical companies to produce more pediatric medicine.

Source: Guangming Daily, March 7, 2016