Bipartisan group of senators asks FDA to examine drug shortages

Bipartisan group of senators asks FDA to examine drug shortages
© Thinkstock

A bipartisan group of senators is asking the head of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to provide recommendations to Congress on how to address nationwide drug shortages.

ADVERTISEMENT
Sens. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphySenate Dems rip Trump after Putin news conference Dems launch pressure campaign over migrant families Sunday shows preview: Trump readies for meeting with Putin MORE (D-Conn.) and Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyGOP senators introduce resolution endorsing ICE Lawmakers pitch dueling plans for paid family leave New push to break deadlock on paid family leave MORE (R-La.) led a letter to FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb. They, along with 29 of their Senate colleagues, asked the agency to convene its Drug Shortages Task Force in an effort to determine the causes of these shortages and craft policy recommendations on how to fix them by no later than the end of 2019.

Specifically, the letter mentions drug shortages for some routinely used medications, such as local anesthetics and sterile IV fluids, the latter of which is used to deliver nearly every drug in an emergency or surgical setting.

“These are essential products used every day, and for many of them there are no suitable alternatives that are readily available,” the senators wrote. “This can result in suboptimal pain control or sedation for patients, and ultimately limit patient access to the most appropriate care.”