Monthly Archives: March 2010

Regulating Prescription Drug Marketing in India


The Medical Council of India (MCI) started 2010 with a long awaited bang.On 1/1/10, MCI put out a statement asking the country’s doctors to stop receiving gifts or favours from any pharmaceutical companies and said they must desist from endorsing products. 

As per the MCI, All medical practitioners shall not receive any gift, national/international travel facility, paid vacations ( for self or family),  from any pharmaceutical or allied healthcare industry and their sales people or representatives.The punishments range from censure (for accepting gifts valued between Rs.1,000 and Rs.5,000) to removal from the Indian or State Medical Registry for more than one year (for accepting gifts worth more than Rs.100,000). 

Now the MCI wants the government to regulate the Pharma companies.

“We have already written to the health ministry seeking equal and stringent regulation for these companies. You cannot expect fair play by punishing one group and sparing the other,” Vedprakash Mishra, an MCI member, said.

Authorities said the health ministry is discussing with all stake-holders and a fair outcome will come out.

Presently, the pharma marketing practices are regulated by a few ancient acts like-
And most importantly, SELF REGULATION.

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Posted by on March 31, 2010 in Uncategorized


10 facts on obesity

Chart displaying BMI classification
  • Overweight and obesity are linked to more deaths worldwide than underweight.

  • Supportive environments and communities are fundamental in shaping people’s choices and preventing obesity.

Body mass index (BMI) – the weight in kilograms divided by the square of the height in meters (kg/m2) – is a commonly used index to classify overweight and obesity in adults. WHO defines overweight as a BMI equal to or more than 25, and obesity as a BMI equal to or more than 30.

READ them all on WHO website.


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Posted by on March 31, 2010 in Uncategorized


Top 20 drugmakers

The following is a list of top 20 pharmaceutical companies, ranked by global prescription 
drug sales for the 12 months through September 2009, according to pharmaceutical 
market research company IMS Health Inc.
- via Reuters 

1 – Pfizer – $41.7 billion – (0.8)
2 – Novartis – $36.7 billion – 7.0
3 – Sanofi-Aventis – $35.1 billion – 3.3
4 – GlaxoSmithKline – $34.3 billion – (3.4)
5 – AstraZeneca – $33.2 billion – 7.8
6 – Roche – $31.3 billion – 8.6
7 – Johnson & Johnson – $26.9 billion – (6.6)
8 – Merck – $25.0 billion – (4.1)
9 – Eli Lilly – $19.6 billion – 8.3
10 – Abbott – $19.4 billion – 5.5
11 – Teva – $15.7 billion – 12.3
12 – Bayer – $15.4 billion – 3.9
13 – Wyeth – $14.8 billion – (2.3)
14 – Amgen – $14.8 billion – (3.1)
15 – Boehringer – $14.6 billion – 10.4
16 – Takeda – $14.4 billion – 2.1
17 – Bristol-Myers – $14.2 billion – 5.8
18 – Schering-Plough – $13.1 billion – 4.3
19 – Daiichi Sankyo – $8.5 billion – 3.1
20 – Novo Nordisk – $8.2 billion 11.6

(Source: IMS Health)

The data does not include the results from mega acquisitions by Pfizer and Merck
as their deals for Wyeth and Schering-Plough were converted in 4th quarter.

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Posted by on March 30, 2010 in Uncategorized


E-patients and Medical Communities – Videos

An e-patient is equipped, enabled, empowered, engaged, equal and expert.










Take-home message:

Physicians of the 21st century must be qualified to meet the expectations of e-patients. They’re the new generation of patients.

Another great collection of posts and Videos on

Good work, @Berci

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Posted by on March 30, 2010 in Uncategorized


Transplant patient finds kidney online – Power of Technology enabled Communications

Dave Wilson has been on a kidney transplant waitlist for four years. Now he’s recovering from a successful transplant, thanks to a donor he found after placing an ad online.
Publicity surrounding the ad finally helped Dave find a donor. Of 30 people who came forward, a complete stranger ended up being a perfect match.

As for the mysterious kidney donor, he’s asked not to be identified.
Is this going to become a trend ? I hope so..
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Posted by on March 29, 2010 in Uncategorized


Protecting Medical data


lock n cable.png

Healthcare organisations in both the private and public sectors on both sides of the Atlantic should “better protect their medical data and applications,” according to data security company Symantec.

The company’s call came as a report from analysts at IDC claimed the percentage of people in the United States with an electronic health record will rocket from 14% to 60% within the next five years. Electronic patient systems are also in the process of being rolled out in the UK, with Summary Care Records available to some areas of the population via the HealthSpace website.

“The NHS Care Records Service will use the strongest national and international security measures for handling your information,” according to a statement on the NHS website.

“Healthcare organisations today are evermore data hungry, therefore demand for storage has increased exponentially around the world,” commented Mike Jones, principal product manager at Symantec. “We’ve already seen digital medical imaging grow at a rate of 20-40 per cent annually and it’s no surprise that storage of personal medical data is now set to move online.”

Medical data can be very tempting, as it allows the markets access to your non-negotiable expenses. We need to better protect our medical data, otherwise we could be milked dry by vested interests.


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Posted by on March 26, 2010 in Uncategorized


Brain network scanning may predict injury’s effects

A brain scanning technique known as resting-state functional connectivity (FC) could help clinicians identify and even predict the effects of brain injuries such as strokes, according to neurologists at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

Originally developed to study how brain networks let various parts of the brain collaborate, FC also appears to enable scientists to link differences in harm done to brain networks to changes in patient impairment, according to results of a study in the Annals of Neurology March issue.

“Clinicians who treat brain injury need new markers of brain function that can predict the effects of injury, which helps us determine treatment and assess its effects,” says Maurizio Corbetta, professor of radiology and neurobiology at Washington University. “This study shows that FC scans are a potentially useful way to get that kind of information.”

Many of the “findings” are downright contemptuous and merely recycled facts.
The FC brain scans need to come up with better applications, more evidence based.

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Posted by on March 25, 2010 in Uncategorized