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6 key tips to help alleviate drug shortages


The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP), the American Hospital Association (AHA), and other healthcare groups have developed a number of long-term strategies to address drug shortages and released their recommendations in a report, ASHP announced last week.

Long-term strategies to address drug shortages have been developed by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP), the American Hospital Association (AHA), and other healthcare groups. Their recommendations have been released in a new report, ASHP announced last week.

The report, “2013 Drug Shortages Summit: Evaluating Long-Term Solutions,” summarizes the work of more than 30 experts from 18 groups that attended the second Summit last year. The recommendations focus on strategies to prevent drug shortages and encourage group cooperation to help solve this public health challenge.

Some of the key recommendations to explore include the following:


1. Discuss legislative options offering incentives to prevent shortages, such as corporate tax credits for manufacturers who operate quality and facility maintenance programs

2. Find better methods of forecasting demand and understanding the effect of planned temporary manufacturing reductions.

3. Help FDA with analysis of drug shortages data to better understand the trends and risks of potential drug shortages and help resolve manufacturer issues before a drug shortage happens.

4. Create a list of critical drugs to help with prioritizing efforts to resolve drug shortages.

5. Work with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and other payers to discuss reimbursement factors that are affecting product availability and develop reimbursement solutions for drug shortages.

6. Work with the Drug Enforcement Agency to revise the approval procedures for controlled substance quotas, making the process more efficient.

“Summit participants continue to explore these recommendations to prevent and mitigate drug shortages,” according to ASHP.

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