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China Plans to Expand List of Essential Drugs

Feb. 13, 2012

China plans to expand its list of essential drugs to 800, up from 307 in the initial group, which was released in 2009. There may be 500 western drugs and up to 300 TCM products in the final listing, according to China’s Minister of Health Zhu Chen, who was speaking to reporters at a World Health Organization briefing on February 14, 2012. Although the 2009 list was made up of basic products, mainly generics, Chen said the revised list may include patent-protected drugs for specialized diseases such as cancer.