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Crackdown on bribery in drug procurement

(Xinhua)

10:42, April 26, 2012

BEIJING - China is to launch a campaign to check invoice records of hospitals' drug procurement in a bid to curb various violations during the process, including commercial bribery and money laundering.

The information was revealed in a statement released Wednesday following a meeting on stemming malpractice in drug trades and medical services. However, it didn't say when and for how long the activity will be carried out.

Last year, 3,030 people were punished for their roles in appropriation of government funds intended for drug procurement or other medical services. Their deals involved 32.9 million yuan ($5.23 million).

In many cases, drug manufacturers or sellers will bribe hospital staff into buying their products, and doctors will get kickbacks if they prescribe their drugs for patients.

While urging strengthened supervision of hospital staff during their prescriptions and use of drugs, the meeting called for the construction of a database of drug products' bidding prices for hospitals' references in order to prevent dealers from tempering with purchase funds.

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