Survey Chemo Drug Shortages Too Common

See on Scoop.itAdvocacy Action & Issues in Cancer

“(HealthDay News) — More than 80% of oncologists report being unable to prescribe their preferred chemotherapy agent due to shortages, according to a letter to the editor published in the Dec. 19 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

“It is becoming increasingly difficult for patients with cancer to receive the lifesaving treatments they need. … The problem of shortages of cancer drugs is complex, and some factors will take years to resolve. Despite the persistence and serious nature of the problem, empirical data are lacking to quantify oncologists’ experience with shortages,” wrote Keerthi Gogineni, MD, Katherine L. Shuman, BS, and Ezekiel J. Emanuel, MD, PhD, all from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

The authors and colleagues collected empirical data to quantify the scope of chemotherapy shortages. Two hundred fourteen randomly selected oncologists who routinely prescribe chemotherapy agents were surveyed from September 2012 through March 2013 regarding the frequency and type of chemotherapy shortages that they had encountered.”

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