26 Feb '11, 4am

Asia needs to manufacture own flu drugs, says expert:

BANGI - Asia must begin to manufacture its own drugs to prepare for an influenza pandemic, said an expert. Health policy analyst Prof Dr Chan Chee Khoon said global manufacturers of flu vaccine and anti-viral medications were concentrated in affluent western countries while developing countries had limited access to these drugs. Moreover, East Asia and South-East Asia are potential epicentres for pandemic flu as seen in the 1956 and 1968 outbreaks which to ok three million lives in Hong Kong alone, he said. "You can't deal with this country by country, but regionally," Prof Chan said during a talk entitled "A Regional Perspective on Pandemic Influenza Preparedness" yesterday. Prof Chan said despite pressure from developing countries, the World Health Organisation's efforts at rebalancing virus sharing and benefits access were still bogged down by disagreements. For this re...

Full article: http://www.asiaone.com/Health/News/Story/A1Story20110226-...

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