Counterfeit medicine from Asia threatens lives in Africa

From Global development | The Guardian Sun Dec 23 2012, 11:33:44

Malaria is one of the diseases affected by unscrupulous traders in fake and substandard drugs

International health experts are warning of a mounting health crisis in parts of Africa because of an influx of counterfeit medicine from Asia that is playing havoc with the treatment of diseases such as malaria. Porous borders in Africa coupled with indifferent oversight in China are combining to turn the continent and its pressing health problems into a free-for-all for maverick manufacturers, some of whom are producing pills with no active ingredients at all.

Precise data is hard to track down because of the informal nature of African health systems. But several recent studies warn that as many as one-third of malaria drugs in Uganda and Tanzania are fake or substandard, with most believed to originate in China or India.

Apart from the lives lost, there are additional concerns about drug resistance building in east Africa, experts say. "It's a crisis any time someone dies," Nick White, who chairs the Wellcome Trust's south-east Asia major overseas programmes and the WorldWide Antimalarial Resistance Network (Wwarn). "It's a massive problem that people have simply ignored. It's not like a boil that's beginning to burst because it's been a problem for a long time. What has happened is we are beginning to recognise it more."

[view whole blog post ]
 See More    |     Report Abuse


You might also be interested in the following news stories:

Central Africa:   Kony to LRA - Bring Me Ivory, Gold, and Diamonds (press release)
ENOUGH Project
19 November 2014

The Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebel group is increasingly trafficking ivory, diamonds, and gold in order to obtain weapons, ammunition, food, and other supplies, the Enough Project, The Resolve and ... [read more]

Uganda:   Freshly Ground Coming to Town (news)
The Observer
20 November 2014

One of South Africa's top bands, Freshly Ground, tops the must-watch-live list for any lover of Afro-fusion music. [read more]

Uganda:   Milege World Music Festival - Camp, Dine and Dance (news)
The Observer
20 November 2014

Festivals in Uganda have been things usually reserved for Kampala; from Bayimba, Laba to Pearl Rhythm, such celebrations of art and culture have barely left the city precincts. [read more]



blogAfrica is allAfrica.com's platform to help you keep an ear on the African blogosphere. We draw diverse voices from around the world who post regularly and insightfully about African issues. Bloggers, submit your blog's rss-feed!