Teva UK has alerted the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to the problem posed by steep energy prices.
Teva’s UK General Manager Kim Innes wrote to the minister seeking assurances that the distribution of medicines to patients will be safeguarded over what’s likely to be a difficult winter.
The problems posed by steep energy prices and the potential for power rationing is putting pharmacies under pressure from increased costs and the risk of losing power supplies as a ‘non-domestic’ energy user, said the company.
Kim said: “In our letter to the Secretary of State we acknowledged that the government knows that medicines manufacture is strategically important and that it’s a vital component in maintaining patient health.”
“But I wanted to make sure that the Secretary of State also realizes the consequences of the energy crisis further down the supply chain – for example, the need for a pharmacy to have a fridge switched on at all times for storing cold chain products.”
“Wholesalers need climate control and lighting 24 hours a day and they can’t decide to simply use less power to reduce bills. The same applies for pharmacies – medicines must be stored within temperature limits, and pharmacies who are already challenged from so many different directions can’t choose to use less energy, and they certainly can’t tolerate simply having electricity cuts, as some of the National Grid’s emergency planning has implied in a worst-case situation.”
Teva says that at the time of writing, the company has not yet received a reply from the Minister’s office.