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Parliamentary questions
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25 September 2019
Question for written answer E-002981-19
to the Commission
Rule 138
Cindy Franssen (PPE)

 Subject:  Shortages of medicines in the European Union
 Answer in writing 

According to Directive 2001/83/EC, holders of authorisations to produce medicines are required always to guarantee their availability. However, in practice, it is increasingly common for patients and doctors in the European Union to encounter shortages of certain medicines. This compels them to resort to more expensive medicines, or to order medicines from countries that are not members of the EU and where the same safety requirements do not apply. This has disastrous consequences for patients’ health.

1. Is the Commission monitoring whether shortages are genuine rather than being engineered by businesses with the aim of selling a more expensive alternative medicine?

2. Apart from better coordination between Member States, how else does the Commission intend to overcome the increasing shortages in the short term?

3. As a follow-up to the mission letter to the new Commissioner for Public Health, what measures does the Commission propose in order to tackle dependence on third countries and to increase the production of medicines in the EU?

Original language of question: NL 
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