Medicines Shortages –Reflections from Industry (by Sandip Manku)

Medicines Shortages –Reflections from Industry (by Sandip Manku)

12 March 2022

Pharmacy GRIT | AUTUMN 2018, Author: Sandip Manku.

In the article, Sandip Manku (Pharmacist and SHPA member) provides his views on Medicine Shortages in Australia from his experiences in dealing with them with his company Pro Pharmaceuticals Group Pty Ltd which since 2015 has been importing medicines from overseas to bridge supply gaps in Australia.

The article covers some of the theories behind the shortages and he also proposes some solutions to these from a demand market perspective. It mainly highlights the lack of incentives to produce less profitable drugs and the current contracting practices (Hospital Tenders) and PBS Price Disclosure (Government Subsidised Medicine) that contribute to the “race to the bottom” leading to product shortages in the market.

While not stressed in the article these “forces” of Contracting Prices and PBS Price Disclosure don’t allow normal “Market Forces” to rectify the Supply and Demand.

While the topic of AI was not touched on in the article the relationship with global pricing and its relationship to supply and number of “players” in the market for a product was addressed. Could AI potentially be used to predict the supply relationship based on market forces?