U.K. groups want drugmakers to guarantee supplies when prices are reduced

The Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) in the U.K. is afraid impending price reductions will lead to drug shortages. It has asked the government to require drugmakers meet certain supply levels, according to PharmaTimes. The PSNC and the British Association of Pharmaceutical Wholesalers (BAPW) have said the price cuts slated for January might make it more attractive for some wholesalers to export drugs to countries with higher prices. They contend price cuts also might lead them to reduce stocks of some drugs. The problem of so-called "parallel trade" has been particularly severe in Europe, where different countries have different drug pricing, varying sometimes as much as 200%. Last year, one group in the U.K. asked the government to prevent drug wholesalers from exporting products. It said a 6-month study found some patients ended up in hospitals when their medications became unavailable. Of course, drugmakers have their own concerns with the country reducing prices on branded drugs. Story | More