Why the problem is so widespreadglobally and across the MENA region?
In this issue of Middle East Business Magazine we attempt to shed some light - in both English and Arabic - on an issue that is affecting both the pharmaceutical industry and the marketing of medicines/ drugs in general. Some of the challenges involve shortages of certain kinds of medicines. A recent World Health Organization (WHO) report shows that such shortages are not just affecting our region, but other areas of the developed world, including the USA. The lack of relevant data for the WHO report's authors was a problem, requiring them to rely on a vast array of sources. So as to provide regional insight, and realising a similar scarcity of data specifically for the MENA region, we have also included a small review which appeared in the European Journal of hospital Pharmacy on the shortage of medicines in Jordan. In other parts of the Middle East, reasons for drug shortages vary; in Iran, the (recently lifted) sanctions are one of the primary reasons; in Gaza, the 8-year blockade imposed on it by Israel is to blame; in other areas, such as in Egypt, numerous causes including national revolutions and financial mismanagement are behind their problems. Yemen, Syria and Iraq are no different.