C11 Medicine shortages: The International Toronto Summit and beyond

Tuesday 12 September 2017
COEX Convention & Exhibition Center : Grand Ballroom 103 1 hours

Organised by the FIP Social and Administrative Pharmacy Section and the FIP Industrial Pharmacy Section

Chairs: Ola Ghaleb Al Ahdab (Ministry of Health, United Arab Emirates)


Medicine shortages continue to be a significant problem for health systems, pharmacists and health care providers worldwide. Shortages of effective medicines generally have negative clinical, economic and emotional outcomes that impact on individuals and public health institutions, posing challenges to health care systems. Also, as a result of medicine shortages and in the absence of commercially available therapeutic alternatives or substitutes, health care practitioners, especially pharmacists, are sometimes obliged to find “work arounds”. For example, pharmacists may need to compound customised dosage forms of medicines in short supply to meet patient clinical care needs and, in doing so, must ensure compliance with sterile and non-sterile compounding guidelines that meet compendial and regulatory standards. There are many challenges that may be associated with work arounds in relation to medicine shortages. This session will discuss current global trends, the clinical, humanistic and economic impact of medicine shortages, and strategies to manage the problem. This session will also describe the importance of active communication and collaboration among stakeholders in managing medicine shortages and identify pharmacists’ roles within the medication use cycle in managing shortages, the medicine supply chain and compounding to meet individual patient needs.  

Learning objectives

At the conclusion of this knowledge-based session, participants will be able to:

  1. List the key recommendations on tackling medicine shortages globally, issued at the International Summit Toronto in June 2013 hosted by FIP.
  2. Describe strategies, resources and options for the management of medicine shortages.
  3. Explain the role of active communication strategies with stakeholders in managing medicine shortages.
  4. Outline the role of the pharmacist in general in managing individual medicine shortages and assurance of safe compounding practices. 


12:30 – 12:35
1. Introduction by the chair

12:35 – 13:00
2. Where are we today since the Toronto Summit?
Dawn Tan (International Medical Clinic for Expatriates, Singapore)

13:00 – 13:25
3. Pharmaceutical compounding as a viable option in medicine shortages
Vaiyapuri Subramaniam (Veterans Health Administration, USA)

13:25 – 13:50
4. Novel strategies can reduce the impact of medicine shortage: Industry perspective
Tiia Metiäinen (European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations, Belgium) 

13:50 – 14:00
5. Conclusions by the chair