(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
*This piece was originally published on November 30th, 2018
In the ‘90s, most of the world’s medicines were manufactured in the United States, Europe and Japan. Today, almost 80% of them come from China. In her book, , Rosemary Gibson says that China is becoming the world’s pharmacy, but that development, she argues, comes with many risks.
- Initially, manufacturing drugs in China made them more affordable. But according to Gibson, cheap drugs come with a hidden cost: inconsistent quality. And she argues that considering the safety of our medications, over the cost of them, should be a priority.
- Gibson says that China’s control of the pharmaceutical market has led to the formation of drug cartels and pharma-gangsters. And that, she explains, has not only made us vulnerable to acts of coercion, but also susceptible to drug shortages.
- Gibson says that commodifying medicine puts the livelihoods of many Americans at risk. She wants leaders in the pharmaceutical industry to start thinking about medicine as a strategic asset - one that doesn’t serve corporate agendas, but aims to benefit the public interest.
- China is the world’s most prolific manufacturer, but , that may not last long.
- writes that the first fully-Chinese manufactured drug hit the market in 2007. The rest is history.
- that venture capital investment in the Chinese pharmaceutical industry has helped China become the world’s biggest drugmaker.