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Pharmacy wholesalers run temporary quotas

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Darragh O'Loughlin, secretary general of the IPU

Darragh O'Loughlin, secretary general of the IPU

Darragh O'Loughlin, secretary general of the IPU

Pharmaceutical wholesalers have implemented a temporary quota system, with pharmacies across the country following unprecedented demand at the outset of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) confirmed it was aware that purchase quotas for certain medicines had been put in place by wholesalers under the oversight of the Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA).

Darragh O'Loughlin, secretary general of the IPU, said the measures could cause difficulties for some pharmacies: "These allocations limit the amount of those medicines that can be purchased by individual pharmacies and can, as a result, cause difficulties for pharmacists who need to supply them to their patients, especially when there is an increased demand for the medicines in question."

In a statement, the HPRA said it had reminded wholesalers of their obligation to ensure continued supplies of medicines so that the needs of patients are covered.

United Drug, one of Ireland's largest pharmaceutical wholesalers, said it had to implement initiatives to ensure products were accessible to all customers to meet enormous levels of demand at the outset of Covid-19. It said activity had hit "more normal levels" in recent days, with the firm continually reviewing its operations.

Sunday Indo Business