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EMA, along with its partners across the European medicines regulatory network, are keeping a close watch on the pharmaceutical supply chains in the European Union as a result of the potential impact of COVID-19.
According to a March 10, 2020 press release, the European Medicines Agency (EMA), along with its partners across the European medicines regulatory network, are keeping a close watch on the pharmaceutical supply chains in the European Union as a result of the potential impact of COVID-19.
Currently, there have been no reported shortages or supply disruptions of medicines that are marketed in the EU, but as the situation is evolving through the region and the world, the possibility of disruptions cannot be excluded, the agency reported. To address any potential disruptions that may arise from COVID-19, a meeting of the EU Executive Steering Group on shortages of medicines caused by major events has been organized.
The mandate of the steering group is to provide strategic leadership for urgent and coordinated action across the EU in times of crisis caused by major events that could lead to disruption to medicines supply for both human and veterinary use. For the COVID-19 outbreak, the group will seek to identify and coordinate actions to be implemented throughout the EU, aimed at protecting patients should there be supply shortages. Additionally, the group will be tasked with keeping patients and healthcare professionals informed of any potential risks and remedial actions to be taken, consistently and transparently.
Although the group will address potential disruptions, pharmaceutical companies have also been urged to ensure continuity of supply, including appropriate manufacturing resilience measures, such as increase of stocks or dual sourcing of materials and products. Other actions that have already been taken across the region to monitor the potential impact of COVID-19 are highlighted on EMA’s website.