Obama Orders FDA to Zero In on Drug Shortage Crisis | allnurses

Obama Orders FDA to Zero In on Drug Shortage Crisis

  1. 1 ...President Obama called for swift government action Monday against a drug shortage crisis that's increasingly left doctors and hospitals scrambling for life-saving medications -- often including those used in cancer and emergency treatment.

    The executive order from the White House called on the Food and Drug Administration to broaden its reporting of potential drug shortages, speed up the review of applications from companies wishing to change production of drugs facing a potential shortage, and pass along more information to the Justice Department regarding instances of suspected collusion or price gouging. ...

    http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/...for-swift.html
  2. Visit  herring_RN profile page

    About herring_RN

    herring_RN has '>40 years' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Critical care, tele, Medical-Surgical'. From 'California, USA'; Joined Mar '04; Posts: 14,337; Likes: 25,680.

    14 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  ChristineN profile page
    3
    About time. The other week I had a pt with critically low Ca levels and my hospital was completely out of IV Calcium Glutonate. We have also experienced recent shortages of Fentanyl, Magnesium, Phosphorus, and IV Lasix, and those are just the most common ones I can think of. I have also have oncology pts be admitted for chemo only to find out that we are all out of the chemo they need.


    Enough is enough.
  4. Visit  ♪♫ in my ♥ profile page
    1
    The present situation with rampant drug shortages is a classic example of how the free-market system is not reliable for the population at large.
    Not_A_Hat_Person likes this.
  5. Visit  elkpark profile page
    5
    Quote from ♪♫ in my ♥
    The present situation with rampant drug shortages is a classic example of how the free-market system is not reliable for the population at large.
    The PBS report specifically identifies that much of the reason for the shortages is because these particular, necessary drugs are no longer profitable enough for drug companies to want to make them ...
  6. Visit  UnionRN2 profile page
    2
    Years ago when I worked in a pharmacy the pharmacist showed me an article in a journal from a pharmacy organization he belonged to. Basically it said that company A had bought all the raw ingredients needed by Company B to put out a certain drug. Company A didn't need the ingredients for their product, they were just holding on to it so that their competing product would gain an edge in sales. Company B took company A to court after failed negotiations. Company A destroyed the stash of the raw materials.

    I wonder how much of this is still going on and contributing to the shortages. And it makes me wonder how many of these shortages are done on purpose to drive up the prices and put more money in the pockets of those CEOs of the drug companies.

    There is a whole lot of dirty dealings in pharmaceuticals.
    anotherone and Not_A_Hat_Person like this.
  7. Visit  ♪♫ in my ♥ profile page
    2
    Quote from elkpark
    The PBS report specifically identifies that much of the reason for the shortages is because these particular, necessary drugs are no longer profitable enough for drug companies to want to make them ...
    I think you've put the emphasis in the wrong place: "The PBS report specifically identifies that much of the reason for the shortages is because these particular, necessary drugs are no longer profitable enough for drug companies to want to make them ..."

    A couple of big sticks that could be wielded: (a) price controls as in most other 1st-world countries, and (b) reduction in length of patent protection.

    Keep in mind: The wealthy and powerful will certainly get whatever medications they or their loved ones need... the concern is for the rest of us.
    Not_A_Hat_Person and herring_RN like this.
  8. Visit  Kooky Korky profile page
    1
    As important as it is to have meds, I don't like the idea of Executive Orders. They are unconstitutional. Issuing them turns the President into a dictator.
    anotherone likes this.
  9. Visit  ErinS profile page
    0
    This is good news for people who need medications. I know in hospice we are constantly facing shortages of roxanol and oxyfast.
  10. Visit  DoGoodThenGo profile page
    1
    Quote from ♪♫ in my ♥
    I think you've put the emphasis in the wrong place: "The PBS report specifically identifies that much of the reason for the shortages is because these particular, necessary drugs are no longer profitable enough for drug companies to want to make them ..."

    A couple of big sticks that could be wielded: (a) price controls as in most other 1st-world countries, and (b) reduction in length of patent protection.

    Keep in mind: The wealthy and powerful will certainly get whatever medications they or their loved ones need... the concern is for the rest of us.
    Well there is that and also the huge and rapidly growing pharmaceutical grey market. There are several companies that have tons of meds supposedly in "short supply", but you have to pay their price. What they do is go to the makers and buy up job lots to secure an inventory then when a hospital or pharmacy comes a calling what normally costs "A" is now a big fat "Z"; translation a drug a hospital normally paid $40 per dose now costs $4000. Don't want it? Tough cheese and step to the side you are holding up the line.
    Not_A_Hat_Person likes this.
  11. Visit  Kyrshamarks profile page
    1
    Quote from elkpark
    The PBS report specifically identifies that much of the reason for the shortages is because these particular, necessary drugs are no longer profitable enough for drug companies to want to make them ...

    The government cannot force a company to make a product if it does not want to. Another reason for product shortages is there are many times a lack of the basic raw ingredients used in these drugs. Many times political strife or warfare in certain parts of the world make getting the ingredients impossible. An executive order is not going to make the drugs appear suddenly if they are not being made.
    anotherone likes this.
  12. Visit  ♪♫ in my ♥ profile page
    2
    Quote from Kyrshamarks
    The government cannot force a company to make a product if it does not want to. Another reason for product shortages is there are many times a lack of the basic raw ingredients used in these drugs. Many times political strife or warfare in certain parts of the world make getting the ingredients impossible. An executive order is not going to make the drugs appear suddenly if they are not being made.
    Actually, during states of emergency or times of war, the chief executive and commander-in-chief has very broad powers. GWB chose to put us in a state of perpetual war so, in fact, the president *could* do so if he chose.

    However, even without such dictatorial moves, the government wields enormous power over the drug companies in the fashion which I mentioned earlier... mere mention of reduction of patent terms for blockbuster drugs or the possibility of imposing price controls would bring those companies to the table.

    Further, it could be legislated that a certain percentage of a company's production be dedicated to certain families of medications.

    Or, acting as the single biggest purchaser of drugs through federal health plans, the military, the VA, and Medicare, the feds could 'negotiate' terms to address the problem.

    The primary issue is the refusal to confront the corporacracy that now rules our world.
    Not_A_Hat_Person and herring_RN like this.
  13. Visit  Jolie profile page
    1
    I can think of no faster or more efficient way to encourage drug companies to exit the U.S. market entirely than to mandate their drug production, pricing or interfere in any new or expansive way in their business.

    Obama is impotent in addressing the economy in this nation, ans has taken to Executive Orders in an attempt to look tough in addressing issues.

    It is having the opposite effect of highlighting his ineffectiveness and making him look silly.

    "You WILL make drugs because I say so!"

    Piffle.
    Kyrshamarks likes this.
  14. Visit  DoGoodThenGo profile page
    0
    Quote from Jolie
    I can think of no faster or more efficient way to encourage drug companies to exit the U.S. market entirely than to mandate their drug production, pricing or interfere in any new or expansive way in their business.

    Obama is impotent in addressing the economy in this nation, ans has taken to Executive Orders in an attempt to look tough in addressing issues.

    It is having the opposite effect of highlighting his ineffectiveness and making him look silly.

    "You WILL make drugs because I say so!"

    Piffle.
    The federal government uses its buying power to negotiate lower prices for the drugs it purchases for its beneficiaries, such as veterans, government employees and retirees. Same thing goes for most if not all countries that have single payer programs and one does not hear many complaints. Those that are made usually come from pharma companies grousing about their "profits", but what else is new?

    Many private insurance companies and other groups in this country also use their purchasing power to obtain better rates for meds. It is mainly Medicare, Medicaid and the uninsured that are left at the mercy of the pharma companies to being charged what the market will bear.

    Pharma compaines are global behemoths and their primary goal is to make money or at least turn a profit after paying for R&D (so they say). There is no reason why meds costing $$ in say France must cost $$$$ in the USA. This is one reason big pharma is so against allowing imported drugs into the United States. They use the arguement that such meds may be less effective and or not made to the same high standards. For the record those advocating such measures aren't speaking of some off the wall production from Unga-Bunga land, just the same stuff sold in other major Western countries. Or are we to believe the USA gets the good stuff and the rest is somehow of poorer quality flogged off everywhere else.


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