Generic drug market dynamics need to change! There are many reasons why essential drugs are in short supply. National drug shortage data show, however, that 2018 was not unique. "The shortage is due to an issue with manufacturing of an active pharmaceutical ingredient used in the drug," the agency said in a news release, while noting that there … Half the time drug shortages result from problems with production, with shipping delays and increased demand for a drug being #2 and #3 on causes of drug shortages. The Drug Information Service at University of Utah Health Care has tracked the total number of drug shortages per year, with the data showing 2011 as the largest total in history with 267 drug shortages (Figure 1). In recent days, hospitals have begun to report shortages for drugs used to place patients on ventilators and treat pneumonia. There is a price for quality and reliability. This graph shows the causes of drug shortages in the USA in 2019 (click here). Avoiding drug shortages. The causes of the shortages are complex, poorly understood, and almost certainly vary from one drug to another. Here is a breakdown of why we have drug shortages in Canada: Some blame the pharmaceutical companies practices, some point to the price controls on generic medications, while others point to government regulations and the lack of a robust pharmaceutical manufacturing industry in Canada. Drug shortage lists are beginning to grow as people stock up on medications during the COVID-19 pandemic and an increase in hospitalizations strains the drug supply.. One of the most frustrating things about drug shortages is how reactive you have to be. The frequency of drug shortages in the United States is rapidly increasing. ... Drug shortages can be ameliorated with a combination of market and legislative solutions. That’s the gold standard. Chronic drug shortages that threaten patient care are caused by rock-bottom prices for older generic medicines and a health care marketplace that doesn’t run on the rules of … The FDA has good reason to not release the names of drugs facing potential shortages, said Rosemary Gibson, who wrote the book “China Rx,” on that nation’s role in American healthcare. There’s no way to become proactive because there’s no requirement for a drug company to tell you that it’s not going to have your product available for you. Since 2007, drug shortages have totaled more than 100 per year. Limiting the drug’s use is the best short-term solution. It's more complicated to understand why this occurs -- and the precise reasons may be as different as the many medications involved. While patients caught up in drug shortages shouldn't go into a total tailspin about their situations, clearly this pharmaceutical problem needs continued attention and action. 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