Shortages of essential and life-saving drugs have become commonplace at virtually every hospital in the country. These shortages disproportionately affect children, who often require personalized compounded medicines. Despite efforts by hospitals, pharmacists, physicians and purchasers, these shortages can disrupt and delay patient treatment plans, require therapeutic substitutions and increase the risk of medication errors This problem has become so pervasive that the American Medical Association declared that drug shortages were “an urgent public health crisis.”
Angels for Change is an organization dedicated to building the resiliency of the supply chain and ending drug shortages. The organization’s latest case study outlines how CHA informed a multi-stakeholder 90-day pilot program with new approaches to build supply chain resiliency and end patient-level drug shortages.
The pilot program showed that the public-private partnership was a fast, effective way to mitigate drug shortages. Within 90 days, STAQ Pharma manufactured 36,950 net new essential medicine units and distributed 20,675 units of concentrated electrolytes. Hospitals used these drugs to administer more than 140,000 life-saving essential treatments.
By providing hospitals with readily available medicines, the program:
- Enabled hospitals to treat thousands of patients without delay or substitution.
- Allowed clinical teams to focus on care rather than searching for drugs in short supply or having to initiate complex and time-intensive mitigation practices.
- Provided medications as part of a nutritional care plan to babies in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) who had to be fed intravenously at a time when their nutritional needs are higher than at any point in their lives.