HEALTHCARE | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Chinese medical tourists are exhausting local HPV cancer drug supply

An estimated 2m Chinese have come to Hong Kong to receive the shot in past two years.

Bloomberg reports that Hong Kong’s supply of Gardasil 9, a vaccine guarding against cervical cancer has been steadily running out due a massive surge in women from the Mainland coming to the city to get protected, effectively exhausting the available supply for Hong Kongers.

Ever since Merck’s & Co’s Gardasil 9 became commercially available, about 2m residents from the Mainland have come for the shot, leading to supply shortages at certain local clinics and ballooning costs which hit $8,000 in recent weeks. 

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“Hong Kong will always get hit by unexpected demand from Chinese consumers,” Bloomberg economist Fielding Chen said.

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Clinics in New Zealand and Singapore with the vaccine supply have also experienced shortages as well but it is arguably in Hong Kong where the supply crunch is most felt with the demand-supply imbalance prompting government-supported Family Planning Association of Hong Kong to reject vaccine administration to people who weren’t local residents last April.

Here’s more from Bloomberg:

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