(Yicai Global) Jan. 23 -- Oral anti-influenza drug oseltamivir is currently widely used and is a clinically recommended front-line antiviral drug, Yicai Global has learned from research institutions and hospitals. Drug manufacturers and suppliers are replenishing its supply to meet rising demand amid the new coronavirus outbreak.
According to the Notice on Diagnosis and Treatment Scheme (Third Trial Edition) for Novel Coronavirus-Caused Pneumonia issued on Jan. 23 by China's General Office of the National Health Commission and the Office of the State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine, there are currently no specific antiviral drugs for the novel coronavirus.
China has so far found suspected cases of new coronavirus pneumonia in 25 provinces.
Oseltamivir's original drug is Roche Pharma Schweiz's Tamiflu, also known as Oseltamivirphosphate. Hubei province-based Yichang HEC ChangJiang Pharmaceutical and Shanghai Zhongxi Sanve Pharmaceutical have obtained the patent license for the drug.
"Roche is sparing no efforts to ensure supply of Tamiflu to over 3,500 public hospitals in China," a Roche Holding representative told Yicai Global.
Roche has taken measures, including coordinating with Italian Tamiflu plants, to ensure sustained supply of the drug in China, the Swiss company said.
Roche's Chinese plants are busy producing Tamiflu to meet demand for the next flu season and the company has organized a work team to coordinate with plants, dealers and hospitals and monitor supply and stock status nationwide to avoid supply shortages in some areas because of inventory imbalance.
The Lianhuaqingwen capsule, recommended by national health authorities, has also become a hot market topic. Producer Shijiazhuang Yiling Pharmaceutical can make around 800,000 boxes a day which is enough for 400,000 patients based on the dosage of one box for two to three days and two boxes per patient, the firm said.
Online drug seller 111.com, meanwhile, has reached a strategic cooperation deal with HEC ChangJiang Pharmaceutical and Yiling Pharmaceutical to ensure sufficient supply of medicines, 111.com told Yicai Global. In addition, in the face of market shortages, 111.com put a new batch of N95 face masks on sale late yesterday, setting an upper purchase limit per account to prevent malicious hoarding.
Chain drugstore Tasly Pharmacy's 3,000 employees in 500 drugstores will be on duty during the weeklong Spring Festival holiday, the company told Yicai Global. The firm will not raise the price of medicines related to the epidemic and will distribute drugs to its stores in both cities and remote areas regardless of the cost to ensure supply, the firm added, pledging that it will use all supply channels to ensure consumers can buy its products online and offline.
Editor: Peter Thomas