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Finding solutions to drug shortages

Lana Bandoim's picture

Shortages of FDA-approved pharmaceuticals are increasing and creating more problems for patients and medical professionals. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reports that critical shortages are affecting a wide range of medications and products. Items ranging from intravenous (IV) saline bags to oncology drugs have been in short supply recently, but companies are trying to provide solutions to these issues.


The Food and Drug Administration explains that shortages of pharmaceuticals can happen for a variety of reasons including manufacturing issues, quality control problems and production delays. For example, companies can experience delays in raw materials that affect their ability to produce the drugs. Unfortunately, the impact on patients can be enormous, and a report from the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists reveals that 98 percent of the 358 pharmacy directors included in the survey experienced oncology drug shortages.

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The survey from the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists found that 72 percent of the pharmacy directors confirmed the short supply of oncology drugs affected the treatment of cancer patients. It is clear that drug shortages are a serious issue, but there is hope. MedsGap is one of the companies offering a solution to the shortages by supplying essential medications during a shortfall. CEO Sim Shain explains that MedsGap has a team of dedicated scientists and staff members who work on creating drugs in short supply.

MedsGap, in conjunction with a 503(B) Human Outsourcing Facility, is able to provide compounding services to hospitals, clinics, patients and others. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists shares that shortages in chemotherapy drugs, antibiotics and other FDA-approved pharmaceuticals need to be addressed immediately and supporting the market to produce these drugs is important. The alternative is already playing out in hospitals and clinics across the country. A study from the P&T Journal found that drug shortages negatively affect patient care through delayed treatments and incorrect substitutions. One solution to the short supply of the medications is to encourage more companies like MedsGap to provide compounding services.