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In the past decade major problems with Chinese-made food and drugs has led to thousands of deaths, mostly in China itself, but many in rich countries too, including at least 150 deaths in the U.S. from counterfeits of the drug heparin. And while fake drugs are the largest concern for foreigners, within China the greatest fear is over milk formula.
The Indian Supreme Court’s decision on Gleevec will surely help some patients seeking affordable treatment (“US should tighten rules for patenting changes to drugs,” Editorial, April 8), but there is no guarantee that local companies can reproduce a drug that is as safe or effective as the original, especially when they have no data-sharing agreement with the company that designed it.
Poorly manufactured and fraudulent medicines kill thousands of people around the world each year. For infectious diseases like malaria and HIV, shoddy medicines also accelerate drug resistance and dramatically alter the course of epidemics. With few new drugs under development, recent progress against these major killers in the poorest countries is precarious.
According to the US Food and Drug Administration, pharmaceutical companies in developing countries such as India are increasingly falsifying data about the quality of their medicines. One solution to this quality control dilemma is to enact sanctions against companies that fail to provide quality products.
Curbing the manufacture and availability of falsified and substandard anti-tuberculosis drugs is necessary both to protect the public health and to safeguard the efficacy of existing drugs—above all the cheap, effective firstline drugs.
More than 8 million people get tuberculosis every year. In 2011, 1.4 million died from it, making it the world’s deadliest infectious disease after AIDS. Thanks to billions of dollars spent on diagnosis and treatment, deaths and infections are declining. Yet a disturbing phenomenon has encouraged the spread of a newly resistant form of the disease.
As the controversy over climate policy has grown, it has been said that greenhouse gas (GHG) control is too hard but solar radiation management (SRM) is too easy. Join AEI for a discussion of the potential economic benefits, as well as the risks of SRM with Lee Lane, J. Eric Bickel and Nobel Laureate Thomas Schelling. A reception will follow.
At this event, panelists will address pension reform challenges by presenting the results of three research papers commissioned by AEI through a generous grant from the Smith Richardson Foundation.
Mark Warshawsky, a well-known expert in retirement finance and a newly appointed commissioner, will explain the implications of a publicly funded long-term care insurance program. Then a panel will debate whether another government program the best way to ensure that families can afford to provide the necessary services for their aging loved ones.