Results of Survey on Drug Shortage
ESOP asked for your opinion and daily experience on Drug Shortage:
More than 50% of the pharmacists get no information about the cause of drug shortage, but if they get information it is in the majority of cases the drug companies who give information. In one third of all cases pharmaceutical companies refer to quality issues due to non-conformity of the production sites (GMP related issues).
Hospital pharmacies have higher costs when buying alternative products and therefore have to put a lot of efforts in providing best therapy for patients. However 20% state that there are delays in treatment, but patients do not face extended hospital stays or admissions to the hospital.
30% of pharmacists have to spend more and more time on research or consultation with health professional colleagues to source alternative medicine, which could otherwise be spent improving patient care.
Half of all participants of this survey report that alternative drugs during treatment need to be substituted. When asked which drugs were mostly involved in shortages the following were named in series: Doxorubicin, 5-FU, Carboplatin and Cisplatin. Besides the above, also Antibiotics caused additional work due to drug shortage.
Some space is devoted to the subject of tenders in drug shortages. Pharmacists state that acceptance of tenders needs to go along with a commercial commitment of the pharmaceutical companies, which should have strict consequences in case of drug shortage.
The careful choice of the supplier is one way to avoid “homespun” problems.
Drug shortages significantly burden health care provider and health care facility finances and personnel. Drug Shortages have an impact on pharmacist work, as far as workload and time is concerned. Effective communication strategies are necessary to manage a drug shortage and should therefore be developed. Patients never faced consequences in the quality of their care.