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Thailand Pharmaceutical council anticipates medicine shortages

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Thailand Pharmaceutical council anticipates medicine shortages | Samui Times
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Thailand’s Pharmaceutical Council are expecting serious shortages within the oncoming month and has asked the government to build up its reserves of drugs for chronic patients.

The Council joined a number players of the industry to address the impact of Covid-19 on pharmaceutical development and, on Tuesday (April 14), they set out five ways to solve the issue so that people with chronic diseases have access to appropriate medicines.

The Country Pharmaceutical Agency (GPO) has recently told many hospitals that it has been running out of certain medicines for more than a month and that it is impossible for the Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Association of Thailand to procure raw materials.

The Ministry of Public Health is also being pressured to find ways to resolve the crisis, particularly as a number of suppliers in countries such as China, India, Europe and the United States have also been hit by the pandemic.

In the meantime, the Pharmaceutical Council has announced the following proposals to address the situation:

1. The government will find a way to centralise the production and delivery of vital drugs by working together on policy and management levels, as well as on relevant agencies such as the Pharmaceutical Organisation, the Thai Association of Modern Pharmaceutical Industries, the Pharmaceutical Council and experts.

2. The Public Health Ministry should develop a policy to order drugs six months in advance, although delivery can be done gradually, giving factories time to prepare raw materials for production.

3. Ensure payments are made within one month so that the pharmaceutical industry can reserve raw materials for a period of six months longer than the current set-up of three months.

4. In the case of shortages, the government should be prepared to negotiate government-to-government deals with countries supplying raw materials, such as China and India, and even to arrange for aircraft to pick up medicines, pharmaceutical products and packaging.

5. The pharmaceutical industry should be allowed to store raw materials for at least six months.

The Pharmaceutical Council has reported that access to medicines for chronic patients is an urgent issue that needs to be resolved urgently. If immediate action is not taken, there will be chaos in less than a month.

SOURCE: The Nation

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