No need to cap paracetamol, flu drugs purchase amid supply woes

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez said Wednesday manufacturers of paracetamol and flu medicines have recommended not to put a cap on the purchase of these drugs amid tight supplies, particularly in Metro Manila and some provinces.

“The manufacturer suggested yesterday that there is no need to put a cap because they can supply and the drugstores would be able to put their quantity limits when they detect (an) unnecessary bulk purchase,” Lopez told reporters in a text message.

He said they have called on pharmaceutical firms and drugstores to speed up the replenishment of paracetamol and other flu medicines, noting that the tight supply situation was mainly due to the timing of deliveries.

In a radio interview with DZMM, Lopez said the pharmaceutical companies and drugstores were not expecting the jump in demand for paracetamol and flu medicines after New Year, thus supplies of these drugs were in normal inventory.

He said there is no shortage of paracetamol and other flu drugs.

Pharmaceutical firm Unilab assured DTI that it would expedite deliveries this week amid the increase in demand for these medicines, Lopez added.

“For Watsons, they have started (delivering) already, and Watsons said they will distribute to their branches today. For Mercury (Drug), they will start delivering tomorrow, Thursday, instead of this coming Saturday,” he said.

In the same radio interview, Pharmaceutical and Healthcare Association of the Philippines (PHAP) vice president Jannette Jakosalem also confirmed there is no shortage in supplies of paracetamol and flu medicines.

She said pharmaceutical firms would be able to replenish the supplies in Metro Manila in two to three days.

Both Lopez and Jakosalem urged consumers not to hoard these kinds of medicines and limit their purchases based on their needs.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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