Foreign drugs will not disappear, but clinical research is in question

None of the foreign manufacturers of drugs has yet announced termination of delivery of its products to Russia, according to the website of Roszdravnadzor.

Evgeny Odinokov / RIA Novosti

This was told by the largest distributors of imported and domestic medicines during the meetings with the head of the department Alla Samoilova. In addition, according to the department, talks take place with some manufacturers in order to increase the supply of drugs to Russia.

“Temporary short-term deficit of some drugs may occur due to the search for new logistic routes and delays in the passage of goods across borders,” message of the department says.

Earlier, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin instructed Roszdravnadzor to control the presence of drugs in pharmacies of the country.

Federal Customs Service (FCS) also reported the preservation of the volume of imports to Russia of medicines from the EU and the United States: according to the ministry, import indicators remain at last year’s level. The main suppliers of medicines to the country today are Germany, France, India, Belarus and the United Kingdom. The most expensive drugs come from the United States, Ireland, Switzerland and Canada.

“In April 2022, 4.7 thousand tons of medicines and products of medical purpose were declared,” the head of the FCS Vladimir Bulavin said.

The Minister of Health of the Russian Federation Mikhail Murashko assesses the situation at the pharmaceutical market, including with drug prices, as fairly stable. And his colleague – Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov even managed to notice that in case of delivery cancellation of certain foreign drugs Russia will be able to establish its own production.

In the meantime, drugs from Russian manufacturers have appeared in the portfolios of many distributors of medicines.

“The production of original Russian drugs has increased significantly more over the past couple of years, and this, is positive trend, of course,” says Anton Zybin, General Director of the Lancet company. “The state implemented its request to increase the share of Russian drugs in the form of support measures in public procurement through the so-called “third extra” measure, when given preference for medicinal products manufactured in the Russian Federation.”

However, there is not leaving the Russian market, but suspension or freezing of investment projects on the agenda of many pharmaceutical companies today, the expert noted. If it can affect domestic health care or not, is a completely different question.

“On the one hand, the presence of foreign producers in the market is an important development factor for any sector of the economy in the context of market mechanisms of creation and regulation of supply and demand, ” Zybin said. “On the other hand, I wouldn’t exaggerate either the importance of foreign investment projects for our industry.”

What really worries market participants is suspension of clinical research on the territory of Russia by foreign manufacturers.

“This is not just a notorious investment. This is a responsibility for the lives of patients. Participating in clinical studies, they should be under supervision, not just receiving therapy. In this context, first of all, it is necessary to remember about responsibility to patients,” the expert claims.

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