LTE: Brown aids drive to end drug shortage

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LTE: Brown aids drive to end drug shortage

The Dispatch – I respond to the June 5 Dispatch editorial, “Band-Aid: Proposal to ease drug shortages doesn’t get to the root of the problem.” Sen. Sherrod Brown’s efforts represent an incremental yet important first step toward rectifying the widespread drug shortages that have plagued the nation.

As the editorial noted, price controls set forth by the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 are contributing to the drug shortage. There are other reasons for drug shortages, including increased demand from countries with newly expanded access to cancer treatment and a very limited number of facilities (approximately four) that manufacture generic drugs.

Limited profits for generic drugs is only part of the problem, and increasing the profit margin is only part of a solution that must be multi-pronged.

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