Mar 28, 2009

Blame Brussels, and get a face mask

Poland has run out of tuberculosis medications. Good friends and neighbors, the Czechs, are shipping some temporary stocks.  According to Rzeczpospolita, a leading Polish daily, the only other country to have ever run out of tuberculosis drugs is Bangladesh.  Luckily, Poland only has a quarter of the TB rate in neighboring Ukraine and Russia (25 new cases per 1000 pop/year, compared to 100 and 110 in Ukraine and Russia, respectively).  But considering the TB epidemic on its border, the lack of the availability of TB treatment is a serious concern.

So how exactly did it come to this?  The EU set a deadline of December 2008 to stop production of non-EU approved medications, a regulation which presumably affected the prevailing TB drug.  The Polish Ministry of Health claimed that there was still a supply that would last a year and half.  Not sure if that means there was a plan for what would happen in the meantime.



also left a similar comment in Ern's neighboring post:

Can't believe such a thing happens in Eu! As if a Central Asian-Caucasian sultanate :))

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