Health Secretary meets HRT suppliers to resolve supply issues

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  • Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid today met key providers to discuss increasing the supply of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) to meet current and future demand
  • Manufacturers described the steps they are taking to boost supply and pharmacists shared their experiences on the front lines, as well as their thoughts on broader solutions including improved communications
  • The meeting follows a series of government actions to ensure more women can access the HRT they need

Urgent action continues to be taken to ensure that women in the UK can more reliably access HRT products.

Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid reiterated his commitment to addressing HRT supply issues when he and Madelaine McTernan, leader of the HRT Supply Task Force, met with industry representatives supply, wholesale and community pharmacy today (May 5).

In a meeting with Aspen Pharmacare, Besins-Healthcare, Gedeon Richter, Novartis, Novo Nordisk, Orion, Pfizer, Theramex, Viatris and community pharmacy representatives, the government confirmed its intention to work with industry to make the needed to fix the supply of HRT broadcast and listen to the experiences of industry and community pharmacy representatives and what they think needs to be done to improve the current situation for patients.

Rising demand has contributed to some of the supply issues, but other factors may also impact supply, related to manufacturing, capacity constraints and business decisions. The Health and Social Care Secretary wanted to understand the issues facing providers and what can be done to address them.

Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said:

I want to continue to reassure women that I am listening to their concerns. Meeting with key stakeholders and providers is one of the many steps we take to ensure women can access the HRT they need.

We will spare no effort in our national mission to increase the supply of HRT. In addition to appointing Madelaine McTernan to lead the HRT Supply Task Force to implement lessons learned from the pandemic and ensure prescriptions are issued in shorter cycles for now, we let’s work collectively with the sector to address this issue as a matter of urgency.

Madelaine McTernan, HRT Supply Task Force Leader, said:

Today’s collaborative and constructive discussions focused on actions that can be taken quickly to improve the situation in the short term as well as to secure longer term changes to ensure these key products can continue to be delivered. reliably and efficiently.

I was encouraged by the positive feedback from all participants and look forward to building on this momentum.

Women’s Health Minister Maria Caulfield said:

I know HRT can be a lifesaver for women with severe menopausal symptoms.

We are doing everything in our power to ensure that women can continue to access the HRT they need to continue living their lives, without being limited by menopause.

It comes as the Health and Social Care Secretary last week issued Severe Shortage Protocols (SSPs) to limit the distribution of three HRT products to three months supply. This will save time for patients, pharmacists and prescribers and will streamline the dispensing of demand for products such as estrogen.

Vaccine Task Force Chief Executive Madelaine McTernan was also recently appointed to lead a new HRT Supply Task Force, applying lessons learned from the successful supply seen during the Covid vaccination program to identify ways to support the HRT supply chain by ensuring it can meet demand in the short and long term. . Additional members of the Vaccine Task Force will also be redeployed to support this work as the government steps up efforts to ensure women have access to high-quality menopause treatment, including HRT.

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