Canadian Pharmacists Report Rising Drug Shortages Which Causes Patient Confusion and Distress

Cancer treating experts in Canada are concerned with national shortages of very important three cancer drugs. These drugs are Vinorelbine, Leucovorin, and Etoposide. Vinorelbine manages metastatic breast cancer and lung cancer. Leucovorin is used in a mixture of chemotherapy drugs. It is used to minimize toxic effects. Besides, Etoposide treats testicular cancer and lung cancer.

As per the federal government’s drug shortage lists. All three drugs facing national shortage which can affect patient’s health across the country. So, the government of Canada is focusing to identify the impact of the shortage of such drugs. The government of Canada is focusing to take actions to address the shortage of drugs. Also, pharmacists, oncologists, and nurses at hospitals in Quebec, Ontario, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick, are focusing to find alternatives or substitutes. Also to share precious vials. But, identifying alternative remedies, notifying prescribers. Also, analyzing the stock with the wholesalers and other suppliers which deal in drug shortages. These are some factors hindering delivering health care services. For instance, Dr. Bruce Colwell, a pharmaceutical oncologist at QEII Health Sciences Centre in Halifax, sees constant drug deficits at his clinic.

According to the Canadian Pharmacists Association (CPA), management of drug shortage has become time-consuming and undesirable for daily practices. This occupies up to 20% of shift time. And up to two hours of 10 hours’ work. Besides, the shortage gap and the product recall from last years resulted in confusion and distress. It also broadens gaps in the drug supply. Majority of Canadians i.e. 68%, mainly aged 60 or over are concerned about drug shortages. According to a national survey 2018, conducted by Abacus Data. One in four Canadians has experienced a drug shortage from 2016 to 2018. So, associations asked the federal government to offer special support for pharmacists. In order to address the drug shortages. This includes the causes of the shortages, complete solutions. And better support to health care providers.