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Pakistan investigating heart medication deaths

Over 20 people have died after taking the free medication provided by government hospitals in Lahore.

A truck driver cleans his vehicle in Lahore, Pakistan.
A truck driver cleans his vehicle in Lahore, Pakistan.
Image: KM Chaudary/AP/PA Images

OVER 20 PEOPLE are believed to have died in the Pakistani city of Lahore after taking heart medication administered by the Punjab Institute of Cardiology.

Government health official Dr Javed Akram said that 110 other people who were also given the free medication had been hospitalised, and half are in critical condition, Dawn reports.

The Pakistan Observer said that Akram is advising anyone who is still taking the medication to stop immediately.

An investigation led by Akram has been launched into the deaths and samples have been taken for testing. Akram says that up to 25,000 people may have taken the drugs from a number of government-run hospitals in the city, but the problem may be limited to just one batch of the medication.

The Nation reports that the patients who became ill after taking the medication had shown a drop in blood platelets and white blood cells.

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