64% of Antibiotics are Unapproved in India

The recent survey published in a UK paper has exposed the widespread irregularities in the antibiotics market of India. The Policy Times urges the Government to look into the issue seriously which is costing lives.


Someone has rightly said, “Nearly all men die of their medicines, not of their diseases.” It seems apparently true in India when we have a look at the latest UK study. The research published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology by the researchers of Queen Mary University of London and Newcastle University. According to the report, the high irregularity in the Indian medicine market where there is rampant chaos. Out of 118 Fixed Dose Combinations (FDC) antibiotics being sold in India during 20072012, a whopping 64% were unapproved by the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO).

Sale of unapproved medicine is illegal in India but perhaps this hardly has any impact on the sale of such medicines. Even after being one of the biggest consumer of antibiotic and antimicrobial resistance, only a meagre 4% of the FDCs are approved by either USA or UK. This data itself speaks of the widespread irregularities in a country where the FDCs are manufactured by almost 500 pharmaceutical companies under 3,300 brand names. The biggest irony is that 53 of these 118 FDCs are manufactured by some big giants like Abbott, Astra Zeneca, Baxter Bayer, Glaxosmith-Kline, Ptfizer, Eli Lilly, Sanofi-Aventis and Wyeth.

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Health issues to the Night Owls

At such a high degree of bedlam in the medicine market where with every passing second lives are at stake, The Policy Times suggest some policy measures which could help the precious lives to be more safe and secure:

  • Mandatory approval of all the FDCs
  • Strict regulations for the MNCs
  • Sudden vigilance of the pharmaceutical companies
  • Giving away the license to manufacture medicines after proper investigation
  • Severe punishment for corrupt officials
  • Shutting down the faulty companies

If these measures would be taken by our policy-makers, we will be able to put a rein on these greedy companies who do not value the life of a human being in exchange of few pieces of paper.