Belgian pharma trade body issues recommendations on domestic drug shortages
Belgium’s pharmaceutical trade body, pharma.be, has issued a conclusion of its report on the shortage and unavailability of drugs in the Belgian market.
While acknowledging that manufacturing standards often mean temporary production and supply issues, pharma.be has highlighted the free circulation of goods within the European Union as a source of drug shortages in Belgium itself.
The statement is the conclusion of a report commissioned last year by pharma.be, the Belgian Pharmaceutical Association, the National Association of Wholesale Distributors and the Belgian Cooperative Pharmacists’ Bureau. The report examined 33 products under quota and experiencing supply issues, and found that, while companies make the appropriate number of drugs for the Belgian market, the drugs are not always available in the right place. It concluded that it is the responsibility of all levels of the supply chain to ensure that sufficient product is available for Belgian patients.
Pharma companies are legally obliged to notify the Belgian Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products of the causes and estimated length of any shortages, which the organization publishes on its website as of January 2014.
pharma.be said: "Our members take responsibility and put every effort to ensure that the patient receives their medication when they need it. pharma.be stresses the importance of regular dialogue between the different agents (representatives of pharmacists, wholesale distributors and authorities) under the auspices of the Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products. It is our duty to everyone in the supply chain to ensure that the Belgian patients receive the necessary medication when they need it. "