Fake Drugs Kill People All Over World

Roger Bate | 22 Jan 2008 | The Providence Journal

Health and crime agencies of the United Nations say that counterfeit drugs are killing people from China to Canada, and that they "promote the development of new strains of viruses, parasites and bacteria ... for example in the case of malaria or HIV." And in many countries their manufacture and distribution are not even illegal.

A Global Industry of Fake Drugs

Roger Bate | 22 Dec 2007 | China Post (Taiwan)

U.N. health and crime agencies say counterfeit drugs are killing people from China to Canada and they "promote the development of new strains of viruses, parasites and bacteria . . . for example in the case of malaria or HIV." And in many countries their manufacture and distribution is not even illegal.

Canucks Against Malaria

Richard Tren | 18 Dec 2007 |

While in Tanzania recently, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced a bold new foreign aid program called "The Initiative to Save a Million Lives." He also promised that the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) would double its assistance to Africa by 2008-09. In all likelihood, a good portion of the money will be allocated to fight malaria, the number one killer of African children. Unfortunately, the CIDA's track record on malaria is patchy at best, and it has much to learn from America.

Rwanda: Eradicate Malaria With Growth, Not Nets

Carlos Odora | 13 Dec 2007 | New Times (Kigali)

This month, the World Health Organization (WHO) will give four brands of Long-Lasting Insecticide-Treated mosquito net its seal of approval, increasing the total to seven. This is good news. The market for these anti-malarial bed-nets is mainly foreign aid agencies which only buy WHO-approved nets, so more authorised products will increase competition, drive prices down a bit and should, in theory, make them more available to those in need. But aid donors' single-minded determination to give everyone nets is just not going to eradicate malaria.

Fake Drugs Kill the Poor

Roger Bate | 04 Dec 2007 | Economic Affairs

The best new drugs work very well, but complicating malaria treatment is a burgeoning industry of fakes and pseudo-pharmaceuticals with suspicious provenance. A sick patient faces both a social and medical dilemma: a hardy strain of malaria and a corrupt, poor and inconsistent health infrastructure that constantly reinforce each other.

Malaria control on Zanzibar Island

Jasson Urbach | 27 Nov 2007 | Health Policy Unit

Earlier this month, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) commemorated the annual SADC malaria day, which occurs on the second Friday of November. The day that was chosen because it precedes the start of the peak malaria transmission period of January to April in most Southern African countries. Around this time, most countries prepare themselves for the coming malaria season and the purpose of the commemorations is to bring malaria control managers together to share ideas about what policies work in malaria control.

Good intentions

Richard Tren | 15 Nov 2007 | Economist

SIR - You fail to properly discuss malaria drug quality ("Money v mosquito", November 3rd). Substandard drugs (as opposed to outright fakes) contain some active ingredient, making them likelier to pass basic pharmacological tests. But while fakes might kill individuals, substandard drugs can drive parasite resistance and could doom a whole class of drugs, as well as not cure the patient.

Quality First

Roger Bate | 15 Nov 2007 |

Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson will today visit the A to Z Textile Mills factory in the Tanzanian city of Arusha. This will invariably be seen as an endorsement of Africa's only anti-malaria bednet producer, which may seem like a good idea: A to Z is a well-managed firm, and it is already increasing the supply of bednets in East Africa. But in a wider context, offering such overt U.S. support to the idea of aid-driven local production is not sensible policy. As I have documented, arbitrary bureaucratic interventions and corrupt practices cost thousands of lives every year across Africa. Pharmaceuticals often sit on quaysides and spoil in the heat, while clinics suffer shortages that directly affect the health of their patients. Local production may avert the perils of customs officers seeking backhanders; but a more direct approach would be to stamp out the corruption that is hampering distribution. This would expedite distribution, improve the reliability of supply, and reduce costs immediately.

Fighting a Disease of Logistics, He Means Business

Jenny Andeson | 13 Nov 2007 | New York Times

When Lance Laifer, a hedge fund manager in New Jersey and former Internet entrepreneur, started researching malaria two and a half years ago, a prominent professor with a medical background told him that doctors were not drawn to malaria research because it was a disease of logistics. "Doctors don't do logistics," Mr. Laifer recalls that he said. "Business does logistics.

Presentation: Development Goes Wireless

Jasson Urbach | 12 Nov 2007 | Africa Fighting Malaria

The rapid spread of cellular telephones in many African countries has been a remarkable and unexpected phenomenon, particularly when one considers the high levels of poverty and social turmoil in many of these countries. Technology that has long been taken for granted by people in rich countries has made life easier, safer and more prosperous for many, including poor people, in developing countries. The result of the rapid diffusion of this technology is that a significant number of jobs and enterprises have been created, which has enabled many Africans to escape the poverty trap.