Regulation released to manage scientific data
Research institutes and producers of scientific data should build a database and quality control system based on relevant standards, according to a new State Council regulation released on April 2.
The State Council, China’s Cabinet, wants to better manage data in fields such as natural sciences, engineering and technology. It said local authorities should set up detailed rules and regulations when implementing national policies regarding scientific data. Research centers should be created by qualified institutions to explore insight into scientific data under the supervision of relevant governmental departments. These centers will collect, classify, process and analyze the data.
Reports are required by scientific data centers before data produced in government-funded research projects is needed and used for academic purposes and before being published in foreign academic journals. Data generated in privately funded research projects, if involving State secrets, national security and public interest, also should be reported to the authorities.
Data produced through government funding, apart from those involving State secrets, national security, commercial secrets and individual privacy, should be open to the public. Users of scientific data must abide by regulations on intellectual property rights and give credit to original producers.
The government and research institutes should strengthen security management on scientific data from the moment they are generated, such as the authorization and authentication for downloading, the regulation added.
Boundaries of four nature reserves to be adjusted
The State Council approved adjustments to boundaries of four national nature reserves in a notice issued on April 2.
The reserves are East Dongting Lake in Hunan province, Jinfo Mountain in Chongqing, Baima Snow Mountain in Yunnan province, and Mount Qomolangma (also known as Mount Everest) in the Tibet autonomous region.
According to the notice, the adjusted size, coverage and function of each nature reserve will be announced by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment.
Related departments and local government are required to clarify the land ownership of each newly adjusted reserve and set their boundaries in accordance with the approval. They are also urged to strengthen leadership, supervision and coordination to build high-standard national nature reserves. Management of nature reserves should also coordinate with local economic developments, the notice added.
Some administrative regulations to be amended
China will make a number of adjustments to some administrative regulations, including 18 that will be amended and another five to be abolished, said a notice recently released by the State Council.
The move ends provisional regulations on private enterprises, rules to enforce laws on prevention and control of water pollution, regulations on administration of geological exploration qualifications, regulations on the administration of breeding, livestock and poultry, and provisional measures for rehabilitation through labor that had been abolished years ago. The adjustments came into force on April 4.
Research and supply of generic drugs to be boosted
China will promote research and accessibility of generic drugs, and improve their quality to better meet public demand and reduce healthcare costs, according to a State Council notice released on April 3.
Drugs, which are indispensable for clinical treatments and in short supply, will be encouraged to go generic, especially for those needed in treating major infectious diseases, rare diseases, pediatric patients and in public healthcare incidents.
Lists of encouraged generic drugs will be published regularly by healthcare and medical authorities. Research projects on key drugs will be included into national programs.
Intellectual property rights protections of generic drugs will be enhanced to balance the interests of patentees and the public. Antitrust legislation was also emphasized to prevent infringement of intellectual property rights.
Evaluations on quality and effectiveness consistency for generic drugs will be promoted. Hospitals, universities, academic institutes and private evaluation institutions will all be encouraged to participate.
Quality standards for drugs and packaging materials will be modified to promote new materials and techniques. By doing so, patients will no longer depend on imports for some materials.
Reforms should be deepened in the evaluation and approval regime for drugs. Permits for generic drugs will be issued on a strict basis regarding the consistency of quality and effectiveness between generic and brand-name drugs.
A quality management and tracing system will be established as well, which covers the life-span process of generic drugs, ranging from research, production and distribution to use.
Generic drugs will be placed on lists of official procurements and in interchangeable lists with brand-name drugs. The drugs will be given priority when it comes to treating patients with AIDS and tuberculosis. Preferential policies will be adopted in taxation and prices, along with incentives in the system of basic healthcare insurance, the notice added.