Drug shortages are a serious problem that can have devastating consequences for cancer patients. According to a recent report by the New York Times, many drugs that are essential for treating various types of cancer are in short supply or unavailable in the United States. This can force doctors to ration doses, delay treatments, switch to less effective alternatives, or even cancel life-saving therapies.
The impact of drug shortages on cancer patients is alarming. According to a study by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), more than 80% of oncologists surveyed in 2019 reported experiencing drug shortages that affected their patients’ care. The most commonly affected drugs were those used for chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and supportive care. The study also found that drug shortages led to increased costs, reduced access, and lower quality of care for cancer patients.
Some of the reasons for the drug shortages include manufacturing problems, quality issues, supply chain disruptions, regulatory hurdles, and market forces. The COVID-19 pandemic has also exacerbated the situation by increasing the demand for certain drugs and reducing the production capacity of some factories. The federal government and the pharmaceutical industry have taken some steps to address the problem, but experts say more needs to be done to prevent further harm to patients and public health.
Drug shortages are not only a problem in the United States. They are a global issue that affects many countries and regions. According to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO), more than half of the countries surveyed in 2016 reported experiencing drug shortages that affected essential medicines, including those for cancer. The report also highlighted the need for better coordination, regulation, and monitoring of the global pharmaceutical supply chain to ensure the availability and affordability of medicines for all.
To get ahead of drug shortages using advanced analytics and specialized solutions, contact us.
According to recent information by ASHP reported by Pharmacy Practice News, drug shortages have reached a 10-year high in the first quarter of 2023. There are currently 301 drugs in shortage, affecting various therapeutic areas such as chemotherapy, CNS, antimicrobials, and fluids and electrolytes. The main causes of these shortages are unknown, but some factors include supply-and-demand issues, manufacturing problems, and business decisions. These shortages have serious implications for patient care and safety, especially for those who rely on drugs that have no alternatives. ASHP and other stakeholders are working to address this issue and advocate for policies that ensure a stable and high-quality drug supply.
If you dream of getting ahead of drug shortages, managing them more effectively, and using less of your time doing so, contact us.
LogicStream’s Drug Supply App™ now recommends therapeutic alternatives to minimize impact of drug supply disruptions
MINNEAPOLIS and SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Dec. 5, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — LogicStream Health, a leading clinical intelligence software and data services firm, and FDB (First Databank, Inc.), the leading provider of drug knowledge that helps healthcare professionals make precise decisions, today announced a collaboration in which the FDB MedKnowledge® database is integrated into The Drug Supply App from LogicStream Health™ to help health systems efficiently prescribe optimal drug therapies during drug shortages and reduce delays in patient care and lower costs.
Drug shortages were common even before the well-known supply chain disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Results of a 2019 survey of health systems showed that 100% of responding facilities were affected by drug shortages in the previous year, which was estimated to add 8.6 million staffing hours and a cost of $359 million at some 6,000 hospitals across the United States.
The Drug Supply App with FDB MedKnowledge will help health systems significantly reduce clinical and supply-chain staff time with evidence-based alternative drug therapy recommendations when an ordered drug is unavailable. The Drug Supply App eliminates delays in care by providing pharmacy staff with information needed to stock therapeutic alternatives ahead of potential drug shortages.
The Drug Supply App’s machine learning model identifies the impact of relevant drug shortages to health systems based on internal usage, as well as demand patterns from comparable organizations and third-party data. The app saves hours for care teams by delivering timely clinical insights to help maintain care plan integrity and promote optimal outcomes.
“Drug shortages that challenged health systems before the pandemic have significantly worsened recently,” said Patrick Yoder, PharmD, CEO of LogicStream Health. “FDB MedKnowledge embedded inside The Drug Supply App shortens the time to identifying effective drug therapies with trusted guidance about therapeutic alternatives. Clinicians are very familiar with FDB’s medication decision support, given widespread adoption of FDB MedKnowledge, and we look forward to working together and successfully bringing this powerful combination of software and drug data to our respective customer communities and prospects.”
FDB MedKnowledge is a comprehensive database that encompasses U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA)-approved prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and limited collections of disposable or reusable medication devices commonly dispensed by pharmacies. The database’s foundational building blocks, which include drug product nomenclature, drug descriptive elements, unique identifiers, and drug classification systems, facilitate interoperability with The Drug Supply App and with hospital IT systems. The foundational building blocks also help ensure drug data quality within The Drug Supply App.
“For more than four decades, hospitals and health systems have relied on FDB MedKnowledge to efficiently support their drug prescribing decisions and to help protect patients’ safety and health with reliable and relevant guidance,” said Bob Katter, president of FDB. “Our integration within LogicStream Health’s platform is a testament to the ability of FDB MedKnowledge to deliver that peace of mind and confidence, even in the face of potentially time-consuming, risky, and disruptive drug shortages. Our actionable drug information combined with LogicStream Health’s data and analytics tools facilitates cohesive, high-quality care delivery and can significantly help to reduce the financial impact of shortages no matter the drug or when the shortages occur.”
About LogicStream Health LogicStream Health, based in Minneapolis, is trusted by a community of high-performing healthcare providers and partners to generate clinical insights from clinical data. The company’s cloud-based clinical data and intelligence platform gathers, normalizes, and connects clinical data. It houses years of experience in its automated processing, advanced analytics, and machine learning. This platform serves as an underpinning for the company’s software-as-a-service (SaaS) clinical insights, data services, and life science products. As a result, customers reduce cost, improve outcomes, improve the supply chain, and accelerate research and development. Customers are generating millions of dollars in ROI from clinical intelligence using LogicStream Health’s clinical data platform.
About FDB FDB (First Databank, Inc.) creates and delivers the world’s most powerful drug knowledge that ignites, inspires, and illuminates critical medication decisions. We collaborate with our partners to help improve patient safety, operational efficiency, and health outcomes. Our drug databases drive healthcare information systems that serve the majority of hospitals, physician practices, pharmacies, payers, and all other areas of healthcare and are used by millions of clinicians, business associates, and patients every day. Please visit us at https://www.fdbhealth.com/, or follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.
About Hearst Health The mission of Hearst Health is to help guide the most important care moments by delivering vital information into the hands of everyone who touches a person’s health journey. Care guidance from Hearst Health reaches the majority of people in the U.S. The Hearst Health network includes FDB (First Databank), Zynx Health, MCG, Homecare Homebase, and MHK. Hearst also holds a minority interest in the precision medicine and oncology analytics company M2Gen. Follow Hearst Health on Twitter @HearstHealth or LinkedIn @Hearst-Health.
Patrick Yoder, PharmD, LogicStream Health CEO, was recently published in Advance for Nurses, discussing hospital drug shortages during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the article, Yoder outlines how drug shortages were a prevailing problem ahead of the novel coronavirus outbreak and were considered a ‘chronic, ongoing crisis with no end in sight.’ As has been the case historically, natural disasters can have long-term effects on the pharmacy supply chain, as evidenced by the shortages following Hurricane Maria in 2018.
Compounding the problem in the current situation is the reliance on foreign countries, namely China, Italy and India, in supplying generic medications and active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) to the United States. As those countries experience a disruption in their manufacturing processes, it has an extended impact on the supply chain for the U.S. pharmaceutical market. One expert, Dr. Scott Gottlieb, has shared that he thinks the list of drugs that could be at risk is much larger than the 20 sole-sourced drugs that are at risk because they are produced only in China.
Below is a condensed version of the six keys to managing shortages in the current environment. Read the full article to get all the details:
Build a watch list
Know your electronic systems
Communicate, communicate, communicate
Know your inventory and update it often
Document all process, workflow, communication and inventory changes enacted during the shortage
Much more detail is provided on each of these six keys in the original article. If you’re interested in learning more about how to manage drug shortages with The Drug Shortage App from LogicStream Health™, visit The App homepage. To help hospitals manage drug shortages during the COVID-19 pandemic, LogicStream Health is also offering free notifications from The App. You can sign up for those notifications by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or completing the form on this page.
LogicStream Health, a health care technology company based in Minnesota, is tackling the costly problem of drug shortages. Inpatient drug spending can inflate by 1 to 5 percent due to shortages. This can ultimately create millions of dollars in waste.
The Drug Shortage App utilizes a combination of sources across the nation to allow hospitals to be proactive about drug shortages. Using a Predictive Impact Score and usage information, The Drug Shortage App tailors potential shortages on a location-by-location basis.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) maintains a list of drugs in short supply, but The Drug Shortage App provides faster, earlier and clearer guidance.
The Predictive Impact Score can also be used to differentiate between shortages that might affect a hospital. This helps to eliminate buying in panic and wasting excess spend and inventory.
If not managed properly, drug shortages can increase costs or cause pharmacy staff to spend excess time identifying shortages and hunting for remaining supplies of drugs on the market. The biggest risk is the nightmare scenario when a pharmacist can’t find a drug that a patient needs.
These reasons are few of many that create the rising urgency for hospitals and health systems to determine an effective way to mange drug shortages.
LogicStream Health is trusted by a community of high-performing healthcare providers across the United States. The company also has a clinical process control and improvement software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform. This stands alone in its ability to help customers gain instant insights to improve vital clinical processes and patient care. As a result, customers reduce cost and improve outcomes.
The LogicStream Health SaaS platform is ‘must-have’ technology. It enables clinical teams to quickly improve clinical processes in near-real-time. It is also designed for rapid implementation and easy adoption by all end-users.
LogicStream Health software today is supporting hundreds of hospitals to standardize processes and deliver highly reliable healthcare.