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Fast Facts

  • Capital: Kuala Lumpur
  • Economy: Economy is 35th largest in the world, nominal GDP US$327 billion, 2014
  • Health Expenditure: 4% of GDP, 2013
  • Population: 31 million, 2015
  • Average Life Span: 72 / 77 (m/f) 2013; average life expectancy is 74.52 (2015)
  • Languages: Malay, Chinese and English
  • Adult Literacy Rate: 93.1% 2014

Health Trends

  •  Operating a two-tier health care system consisting of both a government-run universal healthcare system and a co-existing private healthcare system
  • Government undergoing a strong push to extend national healthcare capabilities  including eight new hospitals, 156 rural clinics, 41 community health clinics, and 50 additional Malaysia clinics
  • The Government has played its part in the healthcare industry as they launch the Entry Project Point (EPP3) under the Healthcare National Key Economic Area (NKEA), thus increasing the scope for both local and international investment in the pharmaceutical market.
  • Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the largest single cause of death in Malaysia, and the government sees type II diabetes as the most significant health issue.
  • 10 leading diseases cause of death in 2013: Coronary Heart Disease, Stroke, Influenza and Pneumonia, HIV / AIDS, Tuberculosis, Lung Cancer, Diabetes Mellitus, Lung Disease, Kidney Disease, Colon-Rectum Cancer and breast cancer.        . 
  • 30% of the population is overweight and an additional 30% of the population is obese. Figures are very high and place Malaysia at number six in Asia in terms of obesity.” – Health Minister of Malaysia in an interview for the Pharma Focus Reports 2011 
  • More than 40% of Malaysian men smoke (women less than 1%) , or a total of 4.7 million adult smokers in Malaysia according to the survey in 2012 

Clinical Trial Landscape

  • Over the last decade, more than one thousand Malaysian doctors, pharmacists, nurses and medical scientists have been GCP-certified and most investigators trained in UK, Australia, Ireland and US. 
  • ICH-GCP well recognised and practice has increased since implementation in 2000. 
  • A network of 33 Clinical Research Centres (CRCs) located at MOH hospitals and there are 9 CRCs at universities and private hospitals nationwide. These CRCs offer the clinical research industry access to hundreds of investigative sites and thousands of investigators from the hospitals. These CRCs also support and facilitate research activities in the hospital, help with research registration and funding and provide training. 
  • Clinical trial application to IRB and Drugs Control Authority (Health Authority) can be prepared in parallel but submitted after Central IRB registration
  • Major University hospitals in the different states offer clinical services for most therapeutic areas and have a local IRB to review clinical trial proposals. 
  • Hospitals under the MoH administration go through a centralised review under the Medical Research Ethics Committee (MREC). 
  • All clinical trials conducted at government hospitals must be registered on the National Medical Research Register (NMRR). This information will be published in the Directory of Medical Research on the NMRR website. In addition, the principle investigators details are also published on this website in a directory, making this very accessible for sponsors for identification purposes

ICON in Malaysia

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  • Presence in Malaysia since 2000

Services Offered

  • Project Management
  • Clinical trial applications to ethics committees and health authority
  • Clinical Monitoring
  • Study start-up activities

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