BUSINESS

Towa Begins Priority Supply of 23 APIs, Mostly under Shipment Curbs, to Quake-Hit Area

By Takashi Ebisawa January 26, 2024

Big 3 Japanese generic manufacturer Towa Pharmaceutical has started supplying 39 products spanning 23 APIs, predominantly under shipment restrictions, on a priority basis to central Japan areas affected by the New Year’s earthquake.

On January 18, the Ishikawa Pharmaceutical Association directly urged the health minister to lift such restrictions within Ishikawa Prefecture, which was hit the hardest by the temblor. The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) soon responded by issuing a notification asking that shipment-restricted drugs be supplied with priority to the prefecture and other such areas.

Towa had already made priority supply arrangements for some of its shipment-controlled products with high needs to the quake-hit Hokuriku region by utilizing drugs in stock that had been manufactured in a ramp-up to address generic shortages as well as its emergency inventories.

The day after the association’s direct plea, the company presented a list of 23 APIs/39 products to the pharmacist group, then on January 25, it started their priority supplies by providing batches of medicines to partner wholesalers, asking them to decide which disaster areas should receive the drugs.

Of the 39 products, 38 are under shipment restrictions, including the cough medicine dextromethorphan, expectorant carbocysteine, antipyretic analgesic acetaminophen, montelukast, a treatment for bronchial asthma and allergic rhinitis, as well as antibiotic clarithromycin. The flu agent oseltamivir is the only product among the 39 not affected by shipment curbs.

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