The Chinese Government has always made it clear that they would prefer Chinese consumers to purchase 100% Chinese products only. Which is shocking for foreign pharmaceutical companies is that they dispose of the innovation needed to produce advanced healthcare products whereas Chinese manufacturers lack of this sophistication. But the healthcare needs will tremendously grow in China, considering the rising of living standards and the aging population.
To meet the demand in quality healthcare products, the Chinese government finally decided to operate a certain number of measures in order to encourage foreign investment in the healthcare sector.
Overview of the measures taken
No need to repeat clinical trials
If an imported medical devices already had a clinical trial abroad that removes the need to do one on the Chinese soil. Before, all imported medical devices that were categorized as Class II or Class III had to undergo a clinical trial in China before they could be used and sold in China.
However, there is an exception for those medical devices that are considered as having a higher risk to the human body. These types of devices still need a separate clinical trial in China, and include cardiac devices, products involving blood pumps, artificial organs and other implantable devices.
Easier implantations for pharmaceuticals companies
The advantage of such a measure is the simplification of the company set-up process. Investors that wanted to manufacture or distribute pharmaceuticals needed to have a Drug Manufacturing License before applying for an Official Business License. Now, investors can apply for these after the company has been set up, which significantly speed up the process. The most important is that it removes all the price controls actions that the Chinese government used to have in place for medicines.
Medical Devices advertisement
There has been a restraints on advertising healthcare products. Advertising for anaesthetics, psychotropic drugs, toxic and radioactive drugs for medical use is absolutely not allowed and it is the same treatment for drugs or medical devices to fight drug addiction. Advertising for prescription drugs other than the previously mentioned is only allowed in professional medical journals.
Health foods should be advertised as having medical benefits, and cannot claim that they are diseases’ healers or necessary to maintain good health. Media companies such as TV channels, radio shows or websites may not advertise medicines, medical devices or health foods under the guise of giving health and lifestyle advices.
A growing market
Connected medical and also cosmetics devices is a growing market in China, with different actors popping every time. Chinese manufacturers of connected devices seems entitled to take over the market. For example, Xiaomi, one of the most important Mobile Company in China, recently launched iHealth, a device which calculate your tension.
A Chinese manufacturer, Viatom Technology, claim that they can measure the arterial pressure without any physical touching. Health costs in China are extremely high and a large part of the population cannot afford proper medical care. That is why the arrival of such products could really help revolutionize the way they heal themselves.
Moreover, Chinese consumers are super connected and having all their medical information available on a smartphone app would be a life changer.