Of all the agonies that confront cancer patients, an unnecessary shortage of drugs they need must be among the more frustrating. The Food and Drug Administration is showing some compassion for the sick by easing import rules for two crucial cancer drugs in order to bulk up supply.
There’s less off the attention-deficit disorder drug Adderall available to the public than there used to be: some even call it a shortage. The company blames the FDA, which has limited the total amount of the drug manufactured: it is, after all, an amphetamine and a controlled substance. Manufacturer Shire has responded to these limits by… hiking the price and making fewer discounts available to consumers.
According to the Food and Drug Administration, several generic cancer drugs are suffering dwindling supplies, creating stumbling blocks for treatment programs. The past two years have yielded sizable spikes in shortages, many of which are generic injections used to treat testicular and breast cancer.