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Supply chain

Ranitidine among drugs added to export ban

The Department of Health and Social Care has added our more medicines to list of those that cannot be parallel exported from the UK.

Ranitidine, alprostadil, beclometasone dipropionate and norethisterone have been banned from parallel exportation as of 18 October.

Earlier in October 2019, the government issued guidance on restrictions banning wholesalers from parallel exporting 23 products, including 19 hormone replacement products, as well as some adrenaline auto-injectors and hepatitis B vaccines.

Manufacturers or wholesalers who are found guilty of parallel exporting of one or more of the listed medicines may face regulatory action by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, including the immediate suspension of their wholesale dealer licence.

When the original parallel exporting restriction was published, Martin Sawer, executive director of the Healthcare Distribution Association, which represents wholesalers, said its member companies believed that a small number of firms holding a wholesale dealer licence may be buying small amounts of stock from several locations and then exporting aggregated packs of these medicines.

Pharmacists had previously been advised to stop supplying some ranitidine products after it was revealed that they may be contaminated with the impurity N-nitrosodimethylamine. The European Medicines Agency announced that it would start a review of ranitidine medicines in September 2019 after tests revealed some products could contain the impurity.

 

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2019.20207217

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