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September 25, 2010

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Home » Metro » Health and Science

Hospital pays patients hurt by eye drug

THE Shanghai No. 1 People's Hospital, where a fake drug caused eye infections in 61 patients, has paid compensation to recently discharged patients, according to the National Business Daily.

The minimum paid was 2,000 yuan (US$299), although some patients discharged early this month were not compensated, the newspaper said.

As of Thursday afternoon, there were still 12 patients in hospital, a patient told the newspaper.

The Shanghai Food and Drug Administration announced on Wednesday that the drug purported to be Avastin, labeled as the Roche product and given a batch number of B6001B01, was counterfeit.

The city's drug accreditation institute and Roche both tested samples of the drug used by the hospital and found it was not genuine.

Police are looking into the case, and people involved will face criminal charges, local FDA officials said.

Besides the hospital, a clinic named Rui'an was also involved in the incident.

Though FDA didn't reveal the full name of the clinic, it is likely the Shanghai Rui'an Cancer Clinic located inside the Ruijin Hospital, the business newspaper said.

The clinic was co-invested by Ruijin Hospital and Hong Kong AmMed International Co Ltd in 2005, according to registration material in the Shanghai Industrial and Commercial Administrative Bureau.

Avastin was used in the clinic as a medicine against cancer, the newspaper said.

Ruijin Hospital said the clinic operated independently; the hospital didn't manage the clinic directly. Drug distributions and patient treatment in the clinic had no direct relationship to Ruijin Hospital.

Ruijin said no Avastin was used in the hospital.

The 61 patients were among 116 people who received the medicine at Shanghai No. 1 People's Hospital on September 6 and 8.

After the injections, the patients reported eye inflammations and poor vision and were quickly hospitalized.

Seventeen patients with severe reactions underwent surgery. The rest received injections to treat the infections.


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