Europe will create a law to end the shortage of antibiotics in the Union

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Europe will create a law to end the shortage of antibiotics in the Union

Pressure from three Spanish MEPs has changed the European Commission’s predictions about the law ending shortages of critical medicines, a situation that has worsened after the pandemic. These are Dolors Montserrat (PP), Susana Solís (C’s) and Nicolás González (PSOE) who, after sending a letter warning of the problem, got from Ursula Von der Leyen a promise in the form of a law to solve it. the concerns expressed.

The representatives of Spain requested actions to strengthen the production of the community (something already included in the European Pharmaceutical Strategy that ended its legislative journey) and control so that there are no more situations like the one experienced in Spain today with antibiotic amoxicillin, to put an end to it, happens. Von der Leyen replied that a report will be launched on the status of these essential medicines which could lead to a Law on Critical Medicines throughout 2024.

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At the same time, the European Commission will also prepare an alliance of industrial actors operating in the Old Continent to diversify supply chains and the production of critical medicines. The first aspect is important because of the current situation, which is still burdened by the pandemic and, above all, affected by the war between Russia and Ukraine, which is now ongoing for more than a year and a half. These manufacturing agreements are also expected by Von der Leyen to be formed in the next year.

One of the problems critical drugs have historically suffered from is price. These are ancient but much needed molecules whose prices have come down over time. This led, among other things, to a large part of their production being transferred to Southeast Asia, where costs are lower than in Europe. Therefore, part of the solution is to have prices in line with the costs of the continent to maintain a small profit on these drugs that are considered strategic.

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But there is also a future problem regarding these factories. In addition to the cost of production, these plants are quite dirty because they work with chemically synthesized drugs. Bringing the facilities to Europe could conflict with the Green Deal achieved on the Old Continent.
If industrial actors are asked to adapt these factories so that they do not pollute, they will also have to invest more, something that can be a disincentive without help.