Toronto, March 18, 2020 –The following is a statement from Jim Keon, President of the Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA) and Biosimilars Canada on COVID-19:
“The Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA) and Biosimilars Canada are working closely with Health Canada, member companies and key stakeholders in the pharmaceutical supply chain to help ensure that Canadian patients continue to have access to high-quality generic and biosimilar medicines.
To date, we are not aware of any drug shortages in Canada related to COVID-19.
Member companies of the CGPA and Biosimilars Canada continue to closely monitor their orders and inventories, and are working with pharmaceutical distributors and Canadian pharmacies to help ensure the continued and equitable distribution of generic and biosimilar medicines throughout the Canadian pharmaceutical supply chain.
Manufacturers are also in contact with Health Canada to monitor any changes to demand for specific pharmaceutical products in case production levels need to be adjusted.
Member companies of the CGPA and Biosimilars Canada are assessing pandemic mitigation measures implemented by Canadian governments to ensure that they do not affect the supply and distribution of medicines.
As a member of the International Generic and Biosimilars Association (IGBA), CGPA and Biosimilars Canada are also working with the World Health Organization (WHO) to continuously monitor and assess international developments and any potential impact on the global drug supply.
In terms of their Canadian operations, member companies of CGPA and Biosimilars Canada have implemented measures to restrict access to their research, development and manufacturing facilities to only essential staff. Employees who are not needed on site for the development, production and distribution of medicines are working from home. Stringent screening and social distancing protocols are in place for all employees who remain on site.
Member company staff responsible for visiting Canadian pharmacies and hospitals have been removed from the field.
The CGPA and Biosimilars Canada will continue to work diligently to monitor developments and ensure continued coordinated, open and timely communications between its member companies, regulators and key stakeholders on issues related to the COVID-19 outbreak and the supply and distribution of prescription medicines.”