Statement from the Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA) Regarding Shortages of Prescription Medicines in Canada

Toronto, March 9, 2012The following is a statement by Jim Keon, President of the Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA), providing an update on shortages of prescription medicines in Canada:

“Canada’s generic pharmaceutical manufacturers continue to aggressively pursue all available options to prevent shortages of prescription medicines in Canada, particularly drug products identified as medically necessary.

Despite the best efforts of all parties in the pharmaceutical supply chain, shortages of prescription medicines can and do occur in Canada and other countries.

When shortages of prescription medicines occur in Canada, generic pharmaceutical manufacturers aggressively pursue remedies, including alternative sources. In addition, CGPA is sharing information among its members to facilitate cooperation amongst companies in the search for alternative supply within Canada and internationally in order to meet the needs of Canadian patients and health-care providers.

Members of CGPA have implemented management strategies to ensure prioritized allocation and distribution of supply, in addition to effective communications to stakeholders.

To help patients and health-care professionals prepare for and deal with current and possible future shortages of prescription medicines, CGPA member companies are reporting current and anticipated drug shortages on the following websites:

Along with our work in cooperation with others in the prescription drug supply chain, Canada’s generic pharmaceutical companies are taking the following steps to help address prescription drug shortages:

  • Investing nearly $100-million over the next three years in new systems, personnel, equipment and facilities.
  • Heavily allocating additional resources – human and financial – to Quality Control and Quality Assurance operations to ensure continued compliance with the evolving regulatory environment.
  • Prioritizing production to better adapt to shifting market demand.
  • Working with Health Canada to prioritize product reviews and approvals based on shortages or potential shortages.
  • Advising and communicating drug shortages with healthcare professionals and patients.
  • Implementing industry best practices guidelines for the prevention, notification and management of drug shortages.

CGPA and its members are continuing to work with our partners in the prescription drug supply chain, including pharmacies, prescribers, distributors, brand-name pharmaceutical companies and government, to develop solutions to help mitigate the impact of prescription drug shortages on Canadian patients.”

For more information, please contact:

Jeff Connell
Vice President, Corporate Affairs
Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA)
Tel: (416) 223-2333
Mobile: (647) 274-3379