White House quietly assembles team to tackle drug shortages: Report

The Biden administration has been taking action to address the prescription drug supply shortage, which has caused upheaval both for patients and providers, according to a May 10 Bloomberg report.

In addition to the FDA, HHS and other federal offices, the White House has met with other stakeholders in the pharmaceutical space including Mark Cuban's Cost Plus Drug Co., NYU Langone Health and an independent testing lab in Connecticut, according to the report. 

One FDA official told Bloomberg that the agency cannot "fix the supply problems alone because larger market forces are driving generic drugmakers out of business, contributing to shortages." Additionally, the official noted that "the companies that buy drugs in bulk pit manufacturers against each other and drive down prices, which shrinks drugmakers' margins." 

The FDA is working with the White House to address the growing issues with the drug supply, but White House officials said the agency "has refused to fully answer questions" and said "the agency lacks the funding or authority to make certain changes," Bloomberg reported.

The committee working to find solutions has also met with pharmaceutical company leaders from Teva and other large players, according to the outlet. 

However, the longstanding approach of the U.S. government has been hands-off from the drug supply chain, which could make implementing lasting change difficult to do, Bloomberg noted.

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