Present Supply/Demand Status of Essential Drugs in China
Year:2010 ISSUE:10
Click:339    DateTime:Nov.02,2010
Present Supply/Demand Status of Essential Drugs in China   

Nine departments of the Central government including the Ministry of Health, the National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology jointly issued the National Essential Drugs Catalogue in August 2009. It contains 205 chemical drugs and biological products and 102 traditional Chinese medicines. The 205 chemical drugs and biological products can be classified by drug form into 274 entries.
   A total of 4 940 pharmaceutical factories (including branch factories) were approved by the National Development and Reform Commission in 2008. Totally 3 050 of them produce essential drugs and a considerable part of these 3 050 factories produce several varieties of essential drugs at the same time. Factories with most essential drugs can produce 116 essential drugs.
   On the whole, factories that produce quite a few varieties of essential drugs are mainly local enterprises. Foreign-funded enterprises with most essential drugs only produce 9 varieties.

Number of Factories that can Produce Several Varieties of Essential Drugs
Number of essential drugs    Number of factories
Less than 5    1 780
6-10    571
11-20    402
21-30    165
31-40    78
41-50    31
51-60    15
61-70    5
More than 71    5
Total    3 052
Source: CNCIC

   Most of essential drugs are produced in several factories. Some products are even produced in several hundred or even a thousand factories. The variety with most factories is compound sulfamethoxazole (oral and normal release) and it is produced in 1 289 factories. Norfloxacin (873), paracetamol (823), metronidazole (736), cefalexin (734), rifampin (715), erythromycin (585), ranitidine (567), prednisone (538), glucose (462) and aspirin (454) come next. Sixty seven products have been commercially produced by more than 100 factories and 113 products have been manufactured by more than 50 factories. Some products are only produced in less than 3 factories. For example, 7 products such as atropine, ambroxol and carpiline are only produced in one factory. Besides, no factory produces deslanoside. There are no statistics of drugs for aids.
   The total capacity of most essential drugs has an overall surplus and there is fierce competition between producers. Only a very few drugs not used often may have the problem of inadequate capacity.
   Based on the sales value of drugs in typical hospitals of 22 cities in 2008, 25 of top 200 drugs by sales value were essential drugs (with no classification of drug form) and their combined sales value accounted for 16.1% of the total sales value of these 200 drugs. Sodium chloride and omeprazole held the first place and the second place. Levofloxacin held the eighth place. Cefuroxim held the ninth place. Glucose held the sixteenth place.