US plant closure could lead to drug shortages

The closure of a Teva Pharmaceuticals manufacturing plant in Irvine, Calif., could affect the availability of 24 generic sterile injectable drugs, including five essential medicines, according to the first analysis from the End Drug Shortages Alliance.

The FDA detailed possible mold contamination of Teva's injectable drugs from unaddressed water leaks in October, according to the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy. Teva recalled more than 2.5 million vials and halted production at the plant, the center reported May 23. 

The alliance's analysis lists drugs that are most vulnerable and less likely to be in shortage as a result of the closure. It also lists suppliers that could ramp up production to meet needs, estimates the potential impact for each drug and details strategies to help combat potential shortages. 

The essential medications under threat of being in shortage are alprostadil, bleomycin, dacarbazine, ifosfamide and octreotide. 

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