President Barack Obama signed an executive order on Monday to address an escalating shortage of life-saving medicines, his newest effort to advance social and economic measures that have stalled in Congress. It is the fifth step he has taken so far in the past one week to gain an advantage over his Republicans rivals and to show the voters he is serious about tackling the country’s problems ahead the 2012 re-elections.
The Obama administration has instructed the FDA to report on impeding drug supply and also to look into application from companies looking to re-vamp to increase the production of drugs. The order reflects a proposed law on the shortages that has been stuck in Congress, but the order lacks the authority of legislation and US health officials cautioned that its impact could be limited.FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg said the latest order would not be able to prevent all future drug shortages. But we can make a really meaningful difference by expanding our net of early warnings, she told reporters.
FDA officials have been investigating the problem but have had trouble identifying a root cause and coming up with a solution.There are over 200 scarce medicines this year alone in the US, up from 56 in 2006, according to the FDA. Most of them are cheaper generic drugs that have been around for years, and yield low profit margins for their manufacturers.
News Report by Adhir Roy Chowdury