Health Care

Trump administration awards contract to make COVID-19 drugs in U.S

Trump administration awards contract to make COVID-19 drugs in U.S”

Many of these medicines are in shortage and have previously been imported.

The United States will announce today that it has signed a US$354 million (RM1.54 billion) contract with a company to make generic medicines and pharmaceutical ingredients in the country needed to treat Covid-19, the New York Times reported late yesterday.

The administration has been looking to build up the ability to produce drugs and their raw materials in the United States after the global pandemic exposed the industry's dependence on China and India for its supply chain. He told CBS News in March that he had been working on an executive action that would tighten domestic procurement by requiring federal agencies to buy US -made pharmaceuticals and medical equipment.

"For far too long, we've relied on foreign manufacturing and supply chains for our most important medicines and active pharmaceutical ingredients while placing America's health, safety, and national security at grave risk", he said.

Phlow, which was incorporated in January, said the contract will help it contribute to a national stockpile of pharmaceutical ingredients for essential medicines.

The four-year contract, with an additional $458 million included as potential options, is a move by the administration to reduce the country's dependency on foreign nations to support its drug supply chain.

"This contract is a start" in addressing the supply chain problems causing drug shortages, said Jeff Francer, CEO of the Association for Accessible Medicines, the trade group for US makers of generic drugs.

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The company submitted a proposal on drug manufacturing in response to an open request from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, one of the HHS agencies overseeing COVID-19 vaccine and drug development, he said.

Under the contract, Phlow will work with private-sector partners to produce pharmaceutical ingredients used in medicines needed to treat COVID-19 patients, many of which are produced overseas.

The partnership comes amid concerns from Trump administration officials and lawmakers over supply chains spread around the world for critical products, as numerous pharmaceutical ingredients necessary for medications to help treat COVID-19 are now made internationally, specifically in China and India.

Edwards said the company plans to create about 350 new jobs and will build "multiple" facilities next to an existing AMPAC-owned pharmaceutical plant in Petersburg, just south of Richmond.

All pharmaceutical products by Phlow will be made on American soil, according to the company's website.

Phlow is partnering with Civica Rx, Virginia Commonwealth University's Medicines for All Institute, and AMPAC Fine Chemicals. Edwards said he was never a member of the company's pricing committee and said the drug saved thousands of lives.



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