NewsLocalImminent changes to Gesy software to tackle shortages of pharmaceuticals

Imminent changes to Gesy software to tackle shortages of pharmaceuticals

Within the next few days, the Health Insurance Organisation will proceed with changes to the island’s General Health System (Gesy) software aiming to end long-standing shortages of pharmaceuticals.

This is what Philenews reported on Wednesday, adding that the pharmacist will be able to offer the cheapest available drug and not the one for which there may be a shortage.

The imminent changes to the software are also expected to ensure that doctors are aware of drugs which are experiencing shortages in view of prescribing patients with available alternatives.

Based on the procedures currently followed, importing companies inform the HIO of the expected shortages in their formulations and the Organization then informs doctors and pharmacists accordingly.

However, changes in the international market are constant and daily, and in many cases the information provided by the importing companies is provided the very last minute.

This does not allow the Organization to react in time and proceed with the necessary procedures. As a result, pharmacists are trapped in software settings which allow them to replace a formulation only with the cheapest in its class and not with a more expensive one.

This means that if the drug in shortage is the cheapest, the pharmacist cannot fill the patient’s prescription since he or she cannot give the patient the next most expensive formulation via the Gesy.

Thus, the patient either does not get the medicine he/she needs or is forced to pay it via outside Gesy-provided procedures.

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