Still sick

As per usual, everyone gets sick from time to time. Sometimes it is your common cold, and sometimes it is a bit more involved. But when you go out to see a doctor and get medicine to deal with the illness and you don’t get better, some of the most freighting thoughts come to mind.

It truly can send you into a panic if you are not getting better after taking medicine. One of the first thoughts a person would have is thinking that they were HIV positive, and there was not enough left of their immune system to deal with the illness. This certainly would do anyone’s head in. The second thought maybe they have been expose to some super bug that can fend off the strongest medicine. In either case, they are starting to panic.

Then after you finish your medicine you go out and get more hoping for the best. You go to a different store and get the exact same medicine. Shortly after you start taking the second batch you start to improve. Suddenly you conclude the problem was not with you, but the medicine you were first given was a dud.

It is not uncommon to see quality control asleep at the wheel in Asia. After all China is now paying a huge price nation wide for poor or no quality control. But when it comes to medicine that can save a life, and it turns out to be little more than a placebo, that qualifies as a crime. And if a person dies from not getting the life saving medicine, that may qualify as murder in some cases.

This is much more common than you think. In fact it may compare to raw herb medicine that can very in strength depending on the health and age of the plant. Medicine in a pill form was meant to be a standard dose and strength. When it is not, then there is a problem.

Certainly there are counterfeit drugs for sale. One of the biggest counterfeit markets is for drugs that assist in making your female partner smile, otherwise know as Viagra. There are plenty of knock off drugs that have little or no active ingredient. They can commonly be found at border crossings in no mans land between immigration points. Unfortunately there is little that can be done as many know going in to buy the drugs at a fraction of the market price, may only have a fraction of the active ingredient. Deliberate or just bad quality control, the end results are the same.

So the true concern here is this lack of quality control is more than a pain in the ass, it can take a life in short order by under dosing when the full dose is needed. Even bith control pills have shown problems, and that can be a big problem for some when it comes to unplanned children. There is no easy answer here and the government is the true body that must step in. Similar fallout as China is experiencing may be the shock therapy needed to fix the problem. No matter what is done, there is a problem and it could cost you your life. It is not local to any one country, but the countries that do produce the drugs need to be on top of this or they risk major consequences fed by a weak global economy. Just ask China.

One Response to Still sick

  1. The problem of counterfeit (and substandard) drugs is most severe in countries with weak trademark law, high corruption and several elements of government failure – political intervention in the courts, high taxes, price controls et cetera.

    I recently co-authored a paper on the subject that may be of interest to your readers: