Healthcare reform a necessity

(China Daily)
Updated: 2011-01-07 07:40
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Comment on "Experts: Overuse of antibiotics can harm children" (China Daily, Jan 5)

After reading the report, I feel worried about our country's medical situation and our children's health. According to the figures given in the article, 60 percent of the about 1.8 million hearing impaired children on the Chinese mainland lost their hearing ability because of improper use of drugs.

This is astonishing and a pathetic fact, especially when such tragedies could have been avoided.

The article quotes medical experts as having said that doctors prescribe antibiotics for about 70 percent of the patients admitted to hospital but almost 80 percent of those prescriptions are unnecessary. This is the main cause of drug overuse (or abuse).

Doctors have prescribed antibiotics for me every time that I have visited a hospital.

Also, doctors always prescribe expensive antibiotics rather than more common and cheaper ones because they can get bigger "kickbacks" from drug companies. By doing so doctors do not only increase patients economic burden, but also create health risks for them.

It's a pity that some doctors have forgotten their sacred duty of saving people's lives rather than falling to the lure of money.

The authorities should make greater efforts to reform the healthcare system to ensure that people's health is not subjected to the whims of some doctors and medicine companies.

Larry, via e-mail

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