Media Outlets Quote Stephanie Kennan in Coverage of Coronavirus and the Medical Supply Chain

March 9, 2020

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As the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak continues, fear of drug shortages in the U.S. rise from the disruption of pharmaceutical supplies from China and India. McGuireWoods Consulting senior vice president, Stephanie Kennan, discussed the issue and potential solutions with multiple media outlets.

USA Today covered the latest developments in a March 6 article, noting that hospitals and healthcare systems are taking steps to shore up supplies.

“The possibility of shortages casts a spotlight on how the U.S. relies too much on China for drugs. This is an opportunity for companies to look for different ways to do the supply chain,” Kennan said. “I think it’s an issue that over the long term we need to grapple with because we can’t even manufacture a lot of the drugs inside the United States.”

Pharma Letter also covered COVID-19’s effect on the biggest production centers of pharmaceuticals in a March 5 article. The outbreak has revealed the dependency of Europe and the U.S. on China for active ingredients in medicines.

“Potentially the shortages will force companies to start looking at alternatives, including new manufacturing sites,” Kennan said.

On March 7, Fierce Healthcare addressed the hospital supply chain for drugs and protective equipment as the outbreak continues.

“Hospitals may have to institute cutbacks if shortages become widespread,” Kennan said. “For instance, a hospital could cut back on elective surgeries if they know an anesthetic is not going to be available. The supply chain issues with China dredge up a long-running concern in the healthcare industry about who makes drug products used in the U.S.”

She added, “the takeaway from this is that we as a country need to figure out how we can find other ways to get these raw ingredients or find some economic incentives that help us develop these new innovations in raw ingredients.”