By Blair Childs, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs
Premier works around the clock with the nation’s hospitals and other healthcare providers, suppliers and federal agencies to ensure products get into the right hands when they need them. With this 360-degree view of the healthcare system, Premier proactively addresses supply chain vulnerabilities before they impact America’s healthcare providers and the communities they serve. However, in the face of emerging public health crises, such as what we saw with H1N1 and Ebola, and potentially now with COVID-19, it's clear Congress needs to take additional steps to prevent gaps in vital medical supplies.
We applaud the House Energy and Commerce Committee and HHS Secretary Azar for examining how the federal government can better equip the nation for responding to the Coronavirus and other public health threats. An essential step is increasing the transparency in the supply chain. This means understanding where drugs and raw materials are manufactured and requiring manufacturers to implement risk management plans. This will shed light on the true risk of shortages of essential drugs and medical supplies. Next, requiring manufacturers of active pharmaceutical ingredients and raw materials to notify the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of supply disruptions will institute an early warning system allowing upstream visibility to potential shortages that can be actioned proactively. Finally, permitting the FDA to temporarily lengthen expiration dates when scientifically sound during a shortage would be critical to ensure supply of vital drugs and medical supplies, such as N95 masks, are available for patient care.
About Premier, Inc.
Premier Inc. (NASDAQ: PINC) is a leading healthcare improvement company, uniting an alliance of more than 4,000 U.S. hospitals and health systems and approximately 175,000 other providers and organizations to transform healthcare. With integrated data and analytics, collaboratives, supply chain solutions, and consulting and other services, Premier enables better care and outcomes at a lower cost. Premier plays a critical role in the rapidly evolving healthcare industry, collaborating with members to co-develop long-term innovations that reinvent and improve the way care is delivered to patients nationwide. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Premier is passionate about transforming American healthcare. Please visit Premier’s news and investor sites on www.premierinc.com; as well as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram and Premier’s blog for more information about the company.