“Dirty Medicine” has made waves across the globe since it was published on May 15. In India, it sparked a national dialogue about corruption and drug quality. It led the country’s main drug regulator to require Indian drug companies to immediately report adverse findings by foreign regulators, and caused India’s most prominent hospital and largest pharmacy chain to suspend use of Ranbaxy drugs. In Japan, it prompted Ranbaxy’s majority owner Daiichi Sankyo to sue former CEO Malvinder Singh and his brother, alleging that they concealed and misrepresented critical information when they sold their 34% share for $2 billion in 2008. See here for Singh’s response. In the U.S., citing the Fortune article, Rep. Steve Israel (D-Huntington) has called on Health and Human Services’ inspector general to examine the FDA’s oversight of foreign generic drugs, and the Oregon pharmacy board has announced it will investigate the safety of Ranbaxy’s drugs.
In Africa, outrage over the article has led one young tech entrepreneur to turn from a possible job with Google to a startup, mPharma, monitoring the quality and safety of the continent’s drugs.