Shortage of medications continues to pose a problem, particularly the shortage in some hormonal and liver function enhancement medications, said Ali Ouf, chief of the medication section at the Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce.
Ouf told Daily News Egypt that there are 13 types of unavailable medications that have no equals or alternatives, such as hormones. However, 200 other medications have equals and alternatives according to data from the Ministry of Health. He added that one of the most important medications in shorty supply is the testosterone hormone and other hormones.
Concerning the testosterone hormone, the reason of the problem is manufacturing, as some national companies work for developing their regional production, while other companies are not able to produce sufficient quantities, said Ouf. He also explained that there is shortage in other hormones due to price problems.
Medicine companies in Egypt face problems since the government’s 2016 decision to raise medication prices, as well as the floating of the Egyptian pound, which added to the price hikes.
Ouf stressed that the ministry has a separate section for monitoring and recording the shortage in medication. Regarding the antibiotic Rimactane 300, Ouf explained, the producing company stopped the product’s sales in Egypt because of the hike in production expenses (following the floatation), yet there are sufficient alternatives. The shortage in liver medications is also another result of the price hikes, he added.
“All in all, the situation in 2017 is better than in 2016, and shortage in medications is a global phenomenon happening everywhere,” said Ouf. He further advised citizens facing the problem to contact the Ministry of Health and they may receive help.