Newspaper: Misuse of antibiotics "kills 80,000 a year" in China 2009-01-12 19:45:37   Print

    BEIJING, Jan. 12 (Xinhua) -- Misuse of antibiotics kills 80,000 people in China a year due to adverse reactions, the China Youth Daily reported.

    In 2007, antibiotics were prescribed to about 74 percent of hospital patients and about 21 percent of outpatients. Those figures are far higher than in many other countries, according to the Ministry of Health.

    "Some patients and even doctors consider antibiotics as a panacea and use them often in minor illnesses. Many doctors even do not know the basic use rules for such medicines," said Wu Yongpei, an official with an experts' panel on drug use at the Ministry of Health.

    Wu noted the main reason for the excessive usage: hospitals earn more money because of the relatively high prices of antibiotics. The drugs accounted for almost 26 percent of drug sales at 124 hospitals in 2004, according to a national survey. The ratio was about 20 percent in recent years, Wu said.

    Health authorities will train up to 45,000 doctors nationwide at public hospitals from this month through February 2010 "to ensure safe, effective and economical use of antibiotics," according to the ministry.

Editor: Xiong
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