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Oncologists exchange drugs to meet the needs of patients

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Oncologists exchange drugs to meet the needs of patients

The incidence of cancer is increasing by 3% every year and it is inconceivable that there are no stocks

  • One waiting period, one phone call and… at one time, the package was found
  • Mrs. Niki's testimony about the lack of medicine is shocking. Her brother waited for a month to be notified so he could start a chemotherapy cycle. He went to the hospital three times, two times he was expelled, while on the third he was admitted, they gave him serum, but in the end they told him that they did not have the medicine. One phone call, however, was enough to locate the drug within an hour and begin treatment.

Deficiencies in medicines have been observed in recent days, resulting in patients suffering and discontinuing their treatment.

The biggest shortage concerns two drugs that are the main treatment for people with leukemia. The quantity of medicines that Cyprus needs is small and does not justify delays, even if the shortage is observed in many countries.

The president of the Pancyprian Anti-Leuk Association, Michalis Lytras , noted that from time to time there are delays in the receipt of medicines, as a result of which the recovery of patients does not proceed. He added that doctors are calling for speeding up the procedures for receiving medicines both inside Cyprus and from abroad, so that patients do not need to go to other countries. He also stressed the need to improve the system.

For his part, the president of the Federation of Patients' Associations, Marios Koulouias , stressed that their patience has been exhausted. He noted that the shortage of medicines is also due to the fact that there is no proper communication between the institutions involved and as he said some do not do their job well. He noted that responsibilities should be borne where and when they exist, stressing that no one can play with the health of citizens.

The testimonies of relatives are shocking

Niki S.'s testimony in “Astra” about the lack of medicine for leukemia is shocking. As she mentioned, her brother was diagnosed with leukemia three months ago and on August 19 he had to undergo a third cycle of chemotherapy. Unfortunately, for about a month the patient waited for a preparation for his treatment. According to Ms. Niki, her brother was called to the hospital three times. Twice he was told that the medicine had not yet arrived and he was expelled, while the third time he was admitted, they gave him serum and at the last moment they told him that they did not have the medicine. Ms. Niki, however, noted that last Wednesday, after a phone call she made, within an hour, as she mentioned, the case was settled, the medicine was found and her brother will start the third cycle of chemotherapy.

In the case of medication, treatment appointments are rescheduled

Another complaint has reached “Astra” for shortages of pharmaceuticals. Soula Piperidou stated that there is a lack of the strong painkiller that her mother should receive for the headaches she is experiencing, due to multiple pelvis which is plasma cell cancer. As he mentioned, last Thursday he went to the hospital to pick up the specific preparation but there was a shortage. She spoke of an extremely difficult situation for a person suffering from cancer, while noting that they do not know how her mother's body will react in case the particular preparation is stopped. As he said, physical pain implies a bad and bad psychological state of both the patient and those around him.

Commenting on the incident, the senior official of the Health Insurance Organization, Panagiotis Petrou , said that it is an opiate preparation, which is under strong legislation with strict conditions. He added that this particular product is a victim of Brexit and that is why the company that produces it has proceeded with the process of registering it in the Netherlands. As he said, the full restoration of the problem is expected to take place in November. He explained that OAU will proceed next week to an intermediate purchase of 5, 10 and 20 milligrams of this formulation in order to meet the constant needs of patients, until the issue is fully settled.

In the meantime, last Friday, sufficient quantities of medicines were expected to arrive in Cyprus for the treatment of people with cancer and leukemia. OAG Panagiotis Petrou noted, however, that the distribution of the preparations in public and private hospitals will begin next week and patients will be able to reschedule their appointments.

In the list of deficiencies and baby milk for gastrostomy

There is also a shortage of baby milk from the state pharmacy for patients who are unable to receive liquid and solid food on their own. Giorgos Antoniou, father of a 7-year-old child, told “Astra” that during gastritis, patients are fed from the stomach. As he said, he has already received 6 boxes of the specific baby milk from the state pharmacy, but when he went on Friday to receive the rest, they said that there is a shortage and that they will come in two months. Mr. Antoniou also contacted his child's nutritionist and told him that they have to wait until the preparation arrives in Cyprus, as there is no alternative. Mr. Antoniou complained that he tried to contact the Ministry of Health, but no one answered his calls.

Exchange of drugs by oncologists to meet the needs

At the same time, oncologists have even reached the point of exchanging drugs, due to the shortages observed in preparations for people with cancer and leukemia.

This was revealed to “Astra” by oncologist George Astras , saying that oncologists are trying to exchange drugs to meet the needs of cancer patients. He pointed out that the problem with the shortages of pharmaceuticals should be solved immediately, because, as he said, people are already in danger. He added that every year the incidence of cancer increases by 3% and noted that for this reason there must be stock.

Pending the OAU reply to the letter of Michalis Hadjipandelas

In the meantime, the Minister of Health has sent a letter to the OAU on Wednesday asking for explanations for the shortages of medicines.

Michalis Hadjipandelas has given a one-week deadline to the Organization. He referred to his last meeting with an OAY delegation on 9 September, during which he had received assurances that there was a supply of medicines. The letter states that the information he had requested for the registration of innovative formulations that have been approved in the last year and for the shortcomings that exist is pending.

Commenting, the senior OAY official, Panagiotis Petrou, said that unfortunately there will always be shortages in medicines because the causes are multifactorial. “Usually either because there is a shortage of raw materials, or there is a problem with raw materials. For example, recently, some shortcomings are due to the pandemic and Brexit. “

Mr. Petrou confirmed that the Organization will respond within the time frame set by the Minister. He said they would cite evidence, but also the objective difficulty that arises when finding a sufficient quantity of drugs.

He noted that the shortage of medicines for leukemia is a problem that affects all countries and not just Cyprus. Please note that the OAU regularly updates the medicines included in its list.

source: dialogue

RUN and POWER Group: Enhanced Living Experience.

Source: 24h.com.cy

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