Home > Current Events > Year 2011 August
A review of stories making the headlines.

Chinese Medicine & Health Products Conference & Exhibition
Hong Kong Trade Development Council, 2 August 2011

The 10th edition of the International Conference & Exhibition of the Modernization of Chinese Medicine & Health Products (ICMCM) is jointly organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council and the Modernized Chinese Medicine International Association. Highlights include a two-day ICMCM Conference to be held with the theme "Milestone of Chinese Medicine Development". Hong Kong's exports of Chinese medicine were worth HK$2.6 billion in 2010, with shipments bound mainly for the mainland, Indonesia, Japan, Taiwan and the United States. In the first six months of 2011, exports of Chinese medicine reached HK$1.4 billion, up 16% over the same period last year.

Laos: Authorities shut down bear farm that extracted the animalíŽs bile
Spero News, 2 August 2011

Vientiane íV Authorities in Laos have shut down a farm where bears were being held captive for the extraction of bile, a substance in great demand in Chinese traditional medicine even if it is from a protected animal. The authorities want to stop this trade, and are planning to build a wildlife rehabilitation centre in the province at a cost of US $700,000. According to the World Society for the Protection of Animals, more than 12,000 bears are currently estimated to be housed in both illegal and legal bear farms across Asia.

Tainted Chinese medical products recalled
Macaudailytimes.com, 3 August 2011

The health authority of Macau has recalled 21 batches of traditional Chinese medical products which were allegedly tainted with a toxic plasticiser. According to the Health Bureau (SSM), laboratory analysis found plasticisers DIBP and DBP in products of Sheng Foong Company Su-ao Pharmaceutical Factory, Taiwan. DIBP and DBP have no harmful effects in the short-term but they could affect the human reproductive system in the long-term. SSM has asked local pharmacies, drug stores, distributors and Chinese traditional medicine clinics to remove these products from the market, and pledged to check for plasticiser contamination.

Gansu promotes micro blog health services
China Daily, 6 August 2011

Health workers in northwest Gansu province have been asked to provide health advice and related services to the public via blogs. At least 2,500 local medical professionals of both Western and traditional Chinese medicines are expected to open micro blog accounts, said Liu Weizhong, director of the provincial health department. An online notice issued by the department also asks local doctors to use micro blogs to guide people seeking treatment, referral suitable specialists, gather public opinion on local health issues, and inform the public on tried-and-tested TCM remedies.

Chinese herb mix may shorten flu fever
Reuters, 6 August 2011

A traditional Chinese herbal treatment may reduce fever from H1N1 influenza just as well as the prescription medication Tamiflu, a new study suggests. The herbal preparation is known as maxingshigan-yinqiaosan (M-Y), which contains 12 herbs and much less expensive than Tamiflu. Duffy MacKay, vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs at the Council for Responsible Nutrition, noted that the two treatments actually work very differently. Tamiflu works to stop viral replication, but the herbal formula is working on symptoms to help people become more comfortable, and those are two very different goals.

China issues essential drugs list as part of medical system reform
Global Times, 19 August 2011

China's Health Ministry issued a list of 307 essential drugs as part of its plan to create an essential medicine system in coming 10 years. "Such measures would ensure most of the rural citizens with comparatively low incomes use affordable and safe medicines," said Fu Wei, an official of the Rural Health Department with the Health Ministry. While the disposable income of China's urban and rural residents grew close to 20 times in the last two decades, their average medical costs soared to more than 130 times as much as they used to be.

China pharmacy takes edible bird's nest off shelf
English.news.cn, 21 August 2011

Beijing Tongrentang Co., a retailer of traditional Chinese medicine, has pulled all edible bird's nests off the shelf after excessive amounts of chemical nitrite were found in Malaysia-imported products. The sales ban became effective at all Tongrentang stores in China and after State Administration for Industry and Commerce, the market watchdog, demanded retailers to tighten quality inspection of bird's nests. The company said consumers were welcome to lodge complaints to the headquarters if any of its stores were found to be selling bird's nests against the ban.

Alzheimer's-fighting Chinese moss compound synthesized in lab
Epoch Times, 25 August 2011

An enzyme inhibitor found in a species of moss has been synthesized efficiently in the lab, and could be used to treat Alzheimer's disease as well as block the effects of certain chemical warfare agents. Known as huperzine A, the alkaloid occurs naturally in a club moss Huperzia serrata, research has shown that it aids learning and memory function by protecting the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. The American scientists have developed an eight-step process to produce the enzyme inhibitor that provides a yield of up to 40 percent and is cost-effective.

Many health-care workers have turned to alternative medicine
Health.usnews.com, 26 August 2011

Three out of every four U.S. health-care workers use some form of complementary or alternative medicine or practice to help stay healthy, a new report shows. What's more, doctors, nurses and their assistants, health technicians, and healthcare administrators were actually more likely than the general public to use any number of wide-ranging alternative medicine options, including massage, yoga, acupuncture, Pilates or herbal medicines. The findings were reported in the journal Health Services Research. According to the U.S. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, about 38% of Americans currently avail themselves of some form of complementary/alternative medicine.

Chiropractic, acupuncture get boost in state budget plan language
Chiroeco.com, 26 August 2011

Health policy experts from Northwestern Health Sciences University helped write language in a recently passed health and human services bill that benefits doctors of chiropractic and licensed acupuncturists. Amid a budget that cut healthcare services in a number of areas, the bill doubled the number of annual chiropractic visits covered by some state payments. It extended the state's medical assistance coverage to acupuncture treatments performed by licensed acupuncturists. It also enabled the creation of a state demonstration project on alternative therapy.

Compiled By:
Rose Tse, Integrated Chinese Medicine Holdings Ltd.
Tweety Tse, Integrated Chinese Medicine Holdings Ltd.