European countries are facing the biggest disruption in the supply of antibiotics in recent years. This was reported on January 30 by the newspaper El Pais.
“Europe’s worst antibiotic supply challenges in decades <…> have forced the entire continent to take emergency action to secure supply chains and ensure patients have access to the antimicrobials they need,” the publication reads.
According to the publication, the biggest problems are observed with children’s antibiotics. It is known that in November last year, the Spanish Ministry of Health allowed the country’s pharmacy chains to sell boxes of 500 milligrams of amoxicillin to adults in order to divide the pills and thus obtain the necessary 250-milligram doses for children.
“These were difficult months with serious supply problems. The work of pharmacists is of great importance in maintaining the minimum necessary supplies and providing information to families on how to proceed with the treatment of minors, ”Juan Pedro Riskes, vice president of the general council of associations of pharmacists, was quoted by the newspaper as saying.
The publication states that at the moment in all European countries there is a similar situation with antibiotics. According to Jose Garcia Carrasco, head of the Norgine pharmaceutical company in Spain and Portugal, quoted by the newspaper, the EU countries are currently going through a key period of adaptation.
“The policy of austerity and the search for competitive advantage by companies has led to the relocation of most of the production to countries such as China and India. This model went into crisis with the pandemic and everything that followed,” Carrasco said.
Earlier, on January 29, one of the largest manufacturers in the European drug market, Sandoz, announced a tense situation with supplies in the pharmaceutical industry in Europe. Since the end of 2022, many countries in the European Union (EU) have been reported to be reporting serious supply problems for some important medicines.
Prior to this, on January 17, Italian Health Minister Orazio Squillaci said that there is a problem of drug shortages in the country and the responsibility for this lies with the media. According to Squillaci, due to the fact that local media disseminate “alarming information” about the lack of certain drugs, there is a “rebound effect” – when patients begin to massively buy drugs for future use, which leads to problems with providing pharmacies and medical institutions with the necessary drugs.