UK Shortages Protocol Comes Into Effect
Serious shortage protocols have come into effect in the UK from the start of July, allowing pharmacists to dispense alternative treatments – including generic versions and even different active substances – when a medicine in shortage has been prescribed.
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The first Serious Shortage Protocol has been issued by the DHSC to tackle supply disruptions for fluoxetine capsules. The protocol came into effect on 3 October 2019 and will expire at the end of the month.
Industry stockpiling will not cover potential medicine supply shortages for six months if the UK leaves the European Union on 31 October with no deal, the UK’s government has admitted in its ‘reasonable worst-case planning assumptions’.
Express freight services are set to be available to UK medicines firms in the event of no-deal exit from the EU. In return, the UK government wants product-level details of stock levels and supply routes as of the prospective Brexit date of 31 October.