This common daily drug may become harder to find, makers say

A shortage of everything can be troublesome, but when it comes to daily medications, it can be downright dangerous. According to the Health Policy Institute at Georgetown University, 66% of all adults in the United States use prescription drugs, with nearly 131 million people relying on medicines for their well-being. If you are one of those people, you know that missing a daily dose can lead to unpleasant side effects and complications. Now the makers of a mainstream drug are warning it could become harder to find. Read on to find out which drugs are in short supply and how it might affect your prescription.

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According to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), there are different reasons for drug shortages, namely “manufacturing and quality issues, delays and interruptions”. The FDA plays a critical role in mitigating the impact on drug-dependent consumers by working directly with manufacturers.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, shortages have become much more common as ongoing global supply chain issues continue to disrupt production. The agency currently has a notice on its drug shortage page that it “continues to take steps to monitor the supply chain,” and manufacturers are asked to hold the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research of the FDA aware of any aspect of their supply. chain impacted by the pandemic. A database lists all drugs that are currently in short supply, as well as those that have recently been resolved – and now another drug can be added to the list.

Troy, Michigan, USA - March 21, 2016: The CVS Pharmacy in Troy, Michigan.  CVS is the second largest pharmacy chain in the United States with over 7,000 locations.

Adderall is a stimulant commonly prescribed for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), having first been introduced in 1996, Bloomberg reported. Since then, prescriptions have multiplied. In 2021 alone, nearly 41 million prescriptions for branded and generic forms of the drug were written, according to data from Symphony Health, per Bloomberg.

The upward trend and increased demand is largely due to telehealth companies like Cerebral and Done, which capitalized on patients’ inability to see doctors in person during the pandemic. Both companies have recently come under scrutiny for prescribing Adderall, which is a controlled substance with “high potential for abuse,” according to the FDA. The backlash even prompted CVS Pharmacy and Walmart to stop filling prescriptions for controlled substances from these telehealth services altogether.

Now those with Adderall prescriptions could find it even harder to access the drugs as Teva, the largest supplier of the drug in the United States, faces supply issues.

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adderall pills
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The issue is related to “supply disruptions,” a Teva spokesperson told Bloomberg, specifically at a manufacturing facility that produces “a few doses of branded and generic Adderall.” Out-of-stock dosages in the US include Adderall 20mg and 30mg immediate release tabletsaccording to the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), as well as four varieties of mixed salts of amphetamines.

The spokesperson further confirmed to Bloomberg that the disruptions “are associated with packaging constraints,” but did not provide specific details. As a result, Teva is experiencing delays in shipping drugs to some customers, the outlet reported.

doctor with a prescription bottle
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The FDA has confirmed that overall there is no shortage of ADHD drugs, and Adderall is not currently listed on the Drug Shortage Database. In an email to Fierce Pharma, a Teva spokesperson said that some customers “may encounter a pending order“, but that the problem will only be temporary.

Speaking to Bloomberg, a Teva spokesperson said for the Adderall brand, the company expects a “full recovery” by mid-August, but patients taking the generic form could wait a bit longer. . According to the spokesperson, generic Adderall will see a recovery “early in the fourth quarter,” and potentially by October, Bloomberg reported.

Better life contacted Teva for more information on a possible Adderall shortage, but has not yet received a response.

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