Medicines to heal themselves are starting to run out

There is a shortage of medicines in local pharmacies. A phenomenon that is spreading nationwide, due to a combination of shortage of active ingredients and packaging, which has led to a slowdown in production and consequently in availability.

“The problem arises from the union of different phenomena, above all from the fact that much of the production of Italian industry is not done in Italy but in China and India where labor costs less – explains Claudia Pietropoli of local Federfarma – Consequently, if a country like China is experiencing a critical moment, the drugs are struggling to arrive. Then there is a lack of raw materials, especially for the liquid forms, there is a lack of containers, blisters and there is a lack of aluminium. Finally, there is also a greater demand for certain types of medicines, either because the flu has broken out, or because many people are also buying medicines even if they don’t need them immediately”.

The alternative for some pharmacies, equipped with an internal laboratory for galenic products, it’s self-production, but to do that they would have to have very high numbers. “The raw materials are also available but, in addition to necessarily having to have a production of a certain number, you also need to have the staff to produce the drugs – he continues – however, this means removing these figures from the counter, also creating a disservice, given that at the moment the pharmacies are engaged in numerous activities”.

Antipyretics, antibiotics, but also many inflammatory diseases, the pharmaceutical crisis does not exclude any sector. Among these is Amoxicillin, one of the most recommended antibiotics also for children, for which Aifa has recently updated the date of unavailability to 31 March. But also a simple anti-inflammatory based on ibuprofen, for which there is currently no forecast.

“The problem affects generic drugs less, even if there are slight shortages even for this type. For this reason, collaboration with general practitioners is essential to be able to give the correct information, also to patients, for therapies with the drugs available”, specifies Pietropoli.

In case of lack of the desired drug, therefore, the suggestion by pharmacists and doctors is to seek advice from professionals. “There are difficulties in the procurement of some drugs and anti-inflammatories – confirms Francesco Noce, president of the local medical association – but as far as our territory is concerned, there are still no particular criticalities. In any case, if a specific drug is missing, it is good to remember that there are also generic drugs and that, alternatively, therapies can also be managed correctly with other molecules”.

In a moment of crisis, collaboration, dialogue and also awareness of the end user are therefore essential. “I agree that dialogue between pharmacies and general practitioners is important, in evaluating alternatives to make up for deficiencies – concludes Noce -. On the other hand, I always advise patients not to take medicines without a doctor’s prescription, it is true that many people tend to buy some products to keep at home in the event of a problem, but taking medicines and supplements without having asked for an opinion from your doctor it’s never a good practice. Medicines, especially those that have never been taken, can also have important contraindications, which cannot be known. It is good to evaluate any path together with the doctor ”.

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Medicines to heal themselves are starting to run out

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