Source: Harvard Business Review

Eric Edwards, M.D., Ph.D., co-founder, President, and CEO of Phlow, has published an op-ed titled “The U.S. Needs to Reimagine Its Pharma Supply Chain” in Harvard Business Review about essential medications currently in shortage.

“When Americans go to a hospital or visit a doctor, they expect that the drugs they need will be on the shelf — whether to treat an infection or save a life. They can’t imagine that a hospital might tell them their cancer treatment has to be delayed for weeks because of a drug shortage, or that the safest and most effective medications for their condition simply aren’t available,” writes Dr. Edwards about the poorly designed global supply chain that we depend on for our nation’s most essential medicines.

The flaws in our system, Dr. Edwards points out, were already taking their toll long before the Covid-19 pandemic. “While the economics of a global supply chain might drive better profits when everything works smoothly, the human cost of the current system is enormous when it fails,” writes Dr. Edwards.

Currently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) lists shortages of 115 basic drugs, and the American Medical Association (AMA) considers drug shortages to be an urgent public health crisis.

As a solution, Dr. Edwards describes new approaches using continuous-manufacturing to enable U.S. producers to become competitive with foreign manufacturers of APIs while gaining greater control of product quality and the ability to rapidly respond to demand. Read the full article, “The U.S. Needs to Reimagine Its Pharma Supply Chain,” in Harvard Business Review here.