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Friday, July 20, 2012

Eyecatchers-158: SC pulls up Centre, MP on drug trials - Questions Govt's Lethargy in gathering data to act against erring doctors

I came across a news item with the above caption in the Chennai edition of The Times of India dated July 17, 2012. The Supreme Court has pulled up the Centre and the MP Govt for showing lack of sensitivity and urgency in collecting data and responding to a public interest litigation. It gave the Govt and the Medical Council of India eight weeks time to file their reports. The news made a painful reading and exposed the callousness on the part of Govt and some doctors. I also made a search in the Net.   The gist of what I gathered:

Unauthorised clinical trials of drugs on humans, unsuspecting poor patients willing to take any sort of treatment, is taking a toll of precious human lives.  Most deaths go unnoticed and unreported.  Even when the Govt acts, the culprits escape with minor fines. Some statistics provided by The Times of India under the caption, HUMAN GUINEA PIGS:

* Illegal clinical trils of drugs rampant in India.

* 1,514 deaths between 2008 and 2010 in clnical trials across the country.

* Madhya Pradesh govt let go doctors who conducted trias on women, children and mentally retarded by imposing a fine of Rs.500/-

* The Supreme Court expresses concern over the lethargic manner in which the Centre gathers data about clinical drug trials.

A general article on Clinical Trials from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, which clearly indicates the regulations and precautions required:

Grateful thanks to The Times of India, IBN Live.com, Progressive Life Sciences.com and Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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