Emergency stocks of medicines to prevent supply problems during COVID-19

02 September 2020

To avoid supply shortages of vital medicines caused by COVID-19, the Danish Medicines Agency has from the outset of the pandemic collaborated with national pharmaceutical wholesalers and Amgros, the organisation responsible for ensuring the supply of medicines to public hospitals in Denmark.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Denmark and the rest of the EU countries have worked together to prevent the medicine supply chains from being disrupted to the extent that there would not be enough vital medicines for patients – caused by the closure of plants and production facilities, problems with transportation and freight or large fluctuations in the global demand for certain types of medicines, etc.

"I am very pleased that the people in Denmark have not experienced critical problems with the availability of vital medicines. The pandemic has put our system under enormous pressure, but we have worked really hard under difficult circumstances that have affected both the internationally scene and the wholesalers and companies here in Denmark. We have so far resisted the pressure", said Director General of the Danish Medicines Agency, Thomas Senderovitz.

Stocks of essential medicines accumulated at the wholesalers

In parallel with the international work, the Danish Medicines Agency has collaborated with the Danish pharmaceutical wholesalers and Amgros, the organisation managing the supply of medicines to pharmacies and hospitals, in order to gradually build up the national reserve of vital medicines that would be difficult to go without for even short periods of time such as antibiotics, insulin and asthma medicine.

"We have increased the reserve more so that we are now better prepared in terms of vital medicines than we were before the pandemic", said Thomas Senderovitz.

Normally, the wholesalers’ stocks can cover the consumption of pharmacies and hospitals for three to four weeks. Now, the stocks of vital medicines can cover up to three months’ use at the pharmacies and between three to nine months’ use at the hospitals.