Home > Current Events > Year 2012 August
A review of stories making the headlines.

Hong Kong food, tea, Chinese medicine fairs open in mid-August
Marketwatch.com, 1 August 2012

More than 1,400 exhibitors from all over the world are expected to take in three Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) fairs. The ICMCM, 16-18 August, will feature more than 110 exhibitors from eight countries and regions. Jointly organized by the HKTDC and the Modernized Chinese Medicine International Association, the event is restricted to trade visitors for the first two days. Fair highlights include a two-day ICMCM conference under the theme ¡§Chinese Herbal Medicine for Major Disease Burden and Health Promotion,¡¨ and the International Postgraduate Symposium on Chinese Medicine. A variety of other forums will also be held during the fair.

Traditional Chinese medicine R&D gets boost
China Daily, 2 August 2012

The National Commission of Development and Reform approved eight research and development projects, six of which in the TCM sector. According to Lian Weiliang, vice-chairman of the commission, the approved projects are all lab construction projects. After the nation's medical care reform in 2009, China has attached great importance to infrastructure construction and talent training and retaining for the TCM industry. Over the last three years, the central government invested 9.88 billion yuan into construction and renovation of 2,342 city and county-level TCM hospitals. The proportion of TCM practitioners among all doctors in China jumped to 12.2% from 10.3% five years ago.

Preserving the fine art of needling
China Daily, 5 August 2012

Wang Qinglan, a former deputy dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine at the China Agricultural University, said that veterinary acupuncture is thriving in Western countries, some foreign veterinary training institutes have built a complete curriculum around acupuncture. However, there is very limited teaching material in China, and some Western vets are even coming to China to give classes to the Chinese. ¡§More and more Chinese veterinarians have turned to treating small animals like pet dogs and cats, because they need work and there is not much of a market in treating horses. Equestrian sports are not popular in China. We need to protect the traditional heritage of our country, otherwise, one day we will have to learn it from other countries. That will be a tragedy.¡¨

KPI to get tough on medicine ads
Thejakartapost.com, 16 August 2012

The Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI) has warned broadcasters against saturating the airwaves with commercials for traditional medicine that could mislead consumers. KPI said that it would soon hand out a fresh round of reprimands to television stations that insisted on airing the commercials that forwarded false claims about the medicine¡¦s supposed therapeutic functions. KPI chairman Muhammad Riyanto said such commercials, especially those for clinics promoting Chinese traditional herbal medicines, had become more frequent over the past few months. Riyanto said that some complaints came from patients who failed to recover after taking the medications offered in the ads.

Chinese medicine enjoys another push
The Standard, 16 August 2012

The Secretary for Food and Health of Hong Kong, Ko Wing-man announced that Kwong Wah Hospital will have at least 50 beds for integrated Chinese and Western medicine in-patient treatment when a two-phase HK$8 billion redevelopment project is completed by 2022. He also noted that the three Hong Kong universities are seeking funds to join in a project to set up a Chinese medicine hospital before then. He was named by Chief Executive to chair a preparatory task force, which will chart the strategic direction of a Chinese medicine development committee being formed. He said the development of Chinese medicine may help in alleviating some pressure on public hospital system on the Western medical side, in particular primary care and rehabilitation services.

Free drugs help sustain traditional Tibetan medicine
China Daily, 16 August 2012

A Tibetan county in Gansu province has cut medical costs for local farmers and herders by exempting in-patients from traditional Tibetan medicine bills. The move is aimed at easing the Tibetans' financial burden and sustaining traditional Tibetan medicine. Tianzhu is China's first Tibetan autonomous county, which accounts for about 32% of Tibetan population. Zhu Qingxue, deputy chief of the health bureau in Tianzhu said that the county has lots of herbal resources and traditional Tibetan medicine has been in practice for at least 1,000 years. Medical institutions in Tianzhu county have developed 170 Tibetan drugs for clinical use. He said: ¡§60% of the ingredients are herbal plants that grow in the county.¡¨

Pains of a Chinese medicine hub
The Standard, 20 August 2012

Executive councillor Bernard Charnwut Chan is not keen on the idea of developing Hong Kong into a Chinese medicine hub as it does not have a competitive advantage over the mainland. Chan's comments come after the government announced the setting up of a preparatory task force on a Chinese medicine development committee. He said that Hong Kong can be the international financial center for China, although the yuan can be freely convertible one day, it still have the competitive advantages on tax and legal systems. However, when talking about medical and education hubs, they all require land which Hong Kong lacks, and also a competitive advantage on scientific research.

Chinese medicine helps acute myocardial infarction patients
Foodconsumer.org, 23 August 2012

A study published in the Chinese Journal of Integrative Medicine indicates using Chinese medicine together with Western medicine helps prevent death from myocardial infarction, nonfatal myocardial infarction, ischemic stroke, heart failure and shock. The study, led by W.H. Duan of China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences in Beijing, showed that among patients with acute myocardial infarction, 2.96% of the study subjects who used Chinese Medicine were re-hospitalized due to angina during a six-month follow-up, compared to 7.88% among the control subjects who did not use Chinese medicine. Also, Chinese Medicine, percutaneous coronary intervention and aniotensin converting enzyme inhibitors were associated respectively with 59, 65,and 46% reduced risk of above conditions.

Chinese medicine company fined ¢G21,000 for selling remedies containing endangered plants
Kilburntimes.co.uk, 23 August 2012

A TCM company has been fined ¢G21,000 for selling illegal herbal remedies containing endangered plants. Beijing Tong Ren Tang (UK) Ltd sold products suspected of containing or claiming to contain Aucklandia costus, Dendrobium, Cibotium Barometz, Gastrodia and Cistanche Deserticola. The company was snared after the police teamed up with the UK National Wildlife Crime Unit, UK Border Agency and the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency, to storm their shop in the West End. Illegal plant remedies items contravening the Convention on the International Trade of Endangered Species were seized at the shop and warehouse.

Over 16,000 Asia-bound dried seahorses seized in Peru
Care2.com, 24 August 2012

Police in Peru have seized a staggering number -16,280- of dried seahorses that were to be exported illegally to Asia. Three cases containing 60 pounds of the dead creatures were left behind after a police operation near the Lima airport. Northern Peru¡¦s warmer waters are a prime breeding ground for the marine animals, which are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites). Police chief Victor Fernandez said the seahorses could have been sold for up to $250,000 aboard, that, across the world last year, 20 tons of dried seahorses were seized. Last year, Peruvian authorities seized two tons of dried seahorses.

China to archive ancient medical texts
Zeenews.india.com, 25 August 2012

China has launched a massive project to archive ancient medical books in order to promote the preservation of TCM, said authorities. The project, part of an ancient document preservation program introduced in 2006, will be the most comprehensive archival of TCM writings since 1949. The size of the project is not yet known, although a report issued last June said it will include at least 2,800 documents. The statement said the project will also include medical writings by ethnic groups and writings from overseas.

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