Anti-inflammatory drugs in shortage as COVID-19 spikes demand

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (WBRC) – The makers of an arthritis drug that was approved by the FDA a few months ago to combat inflammatory symptoms linked to COVID-19 have issued a warning that the drug is in critical shortage.

Actemra is an anti-inflammatory medicine used to treat rheumatoid arthritis. In June 2021, the FDA issued emergency use authorization to use Actemra to treat hospitalized adults and pediatric patients requiring supplemental oxygen, ventilation or ECMO.

As COVID-19 hospitalizations skyrocket in Alabama, across the country and around the world, the drug’s makers, Roche’s Genentech, warn that it will be difficult to cope with the sudden and unprecedented demand.

“The dramatic emergence of the COVID-19 Delta variant, along with the unexpected slowdown in vaccination rates in the United States, has led to an extremely high incidence of COVID-19 hospitalizations in some areas of the country. This new wave of pandemic has led Genentech to experience unprecedented demand for Actemra IV – well over 400% of pre-COVID levels in the past two weeks alone and it continues to rise, ”the pharmaceutical company said in a statement. statement released earlier this week.

“We are aware of a temporary out of stock of Actemra IV in the United States for the 200 mg and 400 mg SKUs, as of Monday August 16, and we have informed our customers. We currently have an 80 mg SKU shortage and expect to be out of stock by the end of the week, ”the statement continued.

St. Vincent Hospital infectious disease expert Dr Leland Allen says the shortage is indeed affecting them and points out that people prescribed the drug for daily use will also be affected.

“We are having a lot of trouble getting[Actemra}Allthepatientswhoweretakingthismedicinefortheirautoimmunediseasesarealsohavingproblemswiththisdrugsoitreallyhasbecomeaproblem”saidDrAllen[Actemra}AllthepatientsthatwereonthatdrugoitsomuneasesAllthepatientsthatwereonthatdrugoitsomuneasesAutheireablare[Actemra}Touslespatientsquiprenaientcemédicamentpourleursmaladiesauto-immunesontégalementdesproblèmesaveccemédicamentC’estdoncvraimentdevenuunproblème»adéclaréleDrAllen[Actemra}AllthepatientsthatwereonthatdrugfortheirautoimmunediseasesarehavingtroublewithitalsoSoit’sreallygottentobeaproblem”saidDrAllen

If you have any questions about the impact this will have on your health, contact your doctor.

Copyright 2021 WBRC. All rights reserved.

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