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My colleagues and referring veterinarians trying to treat their patients with certain medications are upset. When I speak with them, they ask me questions about these medications like, “What happened to...?,” “Where do I get...?,” “What do you use to treat...?” There are severe and numerous medication shortages right now that appear to be inexplicable, frequent and irritating!To make matters worse, I recently received a message from a drug manufacturer announcing another round of what can only be described as “breathtaking” price increases for a long list of items. The price changes were effective immediately and they even asked me to help communicate this to my clients so that they would be aware of the new pricing and not be shocked when the order arrives. The price increases on individual items ranged from a 11% increase to a 963% increase!
The nation is facing unprecedented drug shortages. From cancer treatments, surgical sedatives, intravenous medications and many emergency room remedies, the pharmaceutical supply chain is under duress. Industry consolidation, manufacturing problems and economic strain have strangled the pipeline that supplies medications for hospitals, physicians and veterinarians. The shortages are more frequent and prolonged.Many of the shortages are generic drugs. There are fewer manufacturers of such medications and profitability is shrinking. Any breakdown in manufacturing or shortage of raw materials can cause a widespread medication shortage. The FDA cannot order manufacturers to make more drugs. It can accelerate the approval process or in certain cases allow nonlicensed drugs from overseas similar to the scarce drugs be used in urgent situations. Typically, distributors have a two to three month supply in stock.
I've put together a presentation on what is currently going on in the pharmaceutical industry and how it impacts veterinary practitioners like us. Download the eBook from the Resources for Veterinarians section of WedgewoodPetRx. Additionally, you can watch the on-demand presentation on PetsVetSpace.com for CE credit. I'll be guest blogging here for a few weeks to share with you this important information.
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The information contained on this site is general in nature and is intended for use as an informational aid. It does not cover all possible uses, actions, precautions, side effects, or interactions of the medications shown, nor is the information intended as medical advice or diagnosis for individual health problems or for making an evaluation as to the risks and benefits of using a particular medication. You should consult your doctor about diagnosis and treatment of any health problems. Information and statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration ("FDA"), nor has the FDA approved the medications to diagnose, cure or prevent disease.
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