Home > Current Events > Year 2008 Decemeber
A review of stories making the headlines.
To shed pounds, three Americans head to China
AFP (www.google.com/hostednews/afp/), 2 December 2008

Three American men have taken the unusual step of moving to China in an extreme attempt to shed huge amounts of weight at Aimin Fat Reduction Hospital in Tianjin. Alonzo Bland, 33, and brothers Walt and David Anderson, 56 and 50, moved to China in mid-2008 in an all-out effort to lose weight. Together, they have lost a combined 192 kilograms. Alonzo had won a contest organised by China Connection, a US firm promoting TCM, and was being treated free of charge for as long as it took to lose his target weight. Every morning, the three have lie down in their bedrooms at for acupuncture, which doctors say increases the metabolism rate and reduces appetite. The other parts of the weight-loss treatment are similar to Western methods (plenty of exercise as well as nutritious meals).

Taiwan hopes to discuss Chinese medicine issues in cross-strait talks
Taiwan News (www.etaiwannews.com), 4 December 2008

Taiwan Department of Health (DOH) Minister Yeh Chin-chuan mentioned recently that the regulation of TCM and animal feed safety will be included in the next round of cross-Taiwan Strait consultations on food safety, he said recently. In its inspection of food products from China, the DOH in recent years has found levels of bleach, artificial sweeteners, preservatives, residual pesticides and animal drugs in excess of allowable standards in Taiwan. Around 90 percent of all Chinese medicines imported by Taiwan are from China.

China blacklists 74 websites for selling fake traditional Chinese medicine
Xinhua (www.chinaview.cn), 9 December 2008

China's State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine (SATCM) recently blacklisted 74 websites for selling fake Chinese herbal medicine. Consumers are warned of buying any type of medicine from organizations such as the International Diabetes Institute of Genetic Engineering, the China Research Center for Chinese Medicine) and the China Cardiovascular Research Institute. Drugs sold on those websites claimed to be able to cure high blood pressure, skin diseases, diabetes and tumors. The State Food and Drug Administration (SFDA), said only those sites with the SFDA license of Internet medicine business can sell over-the-counter (OTC) drugs to individuals. The SFDA has published the blacklist on its website (www.sfda.gov.cn) and urged the public to check it before buying drugs online.

China face transplant patient dead: doctor
AFP (www.google.com/hostednews/afp/) 20 December 2008

A Chinese man who had a face transplant in 2006 after a bear attack has died according to government officials. Li Guoxing, 32, died in July at his rural home in isolated southwestern Yunnan after forsaking immune-system drugs in favor of herbal medicine. His surgeon, Guo Shuzhong said that his death wasn't due to the surgery, but possibly due to failture to use immuno-suppression drugs. The exact cause of death however is unknown as Li's family refused permission for an autopsy.

Sale of cold medicine through Internet to be banned
Mainichi Japan (http://mdn.mainichi.jp), 24 December 2008

The sale of cold medicine and most of other non-prescription drugs through the Internet in Japan will be prohibited under a amendment to a health law that will come into force in June next year, the Japanese government has announced. The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare has decided to include a ban on online sales of certain types of non-prescription medical drugs in the enforcement regulations for the revised Pharmaceutical Affairs Law, which will take effect in June. The amendment will prohibit online sales of cold medicine, Chinese herbal medicine and other kinds of medicinal products that have high risks of side-effects.

Hospitals to embrace TCM
Shanghai Daily (http://www.shanghaidaily.com), 29 December 2008

In 2009, around 20 to 25 medical institutions in Shanghai, mostly district-level hospitals and neighbourhood health centres, are to offer treatment and advice based on TCM. Therapies such as herbal soup, exercise, music therapy, acupuncture and massage will all be included. There will be training for general practitioners so that they can visit homes to monitor patients and give advice. The Shanghai health bureau will evaluate the effects of the service by comparing people before and after treatment. The districts of Xuhui, Changning, Zhabei and Hongkou have been approved as regions for TCM-featured neighborhood health services by state TCM authorities.

Compiled By:
Jennifer Eagleton, BA, MA (Asian Studies), Integrated Chinese Medicine Holdings Ltd.