China's National Health Commission on September 5 announced its recent plan to publish the 2018 National Essential Medicines List, which will cover 165 more medicines than the prior edition.
The updated list will have 685 medicines, made up of 417 Western medicines and 268 Chinese-patented medicines, Zeng Yixin, Vice Director of the commission, said at a press conference.
The new edition of the list, focusing on cancer as well as pediatric and chronic diseases, has added 12 antitumor drugs, 22 medicines for children, and a new hepatitis C drug, Zeng said.
"Covering a wider range of medicines, the updated list can not only meet clinical needs such as the treatment of common and chronic diseases as well as first aid but also offer multiple options for patients with different diseases," he said.
The latest edition of the list was published in 2012, covering 520 medicines.
(Xinhua News Agency September 5, 2018)