The Pharmaceutical and Healthcare Association of the Philippines (PHAP), representing companies that engage in the discovery of new and life-saving medicines and vaccines in the country, expressed its deep concern with the ongoing war in Ukraine due to its immense impact on human lives and health.
PHAP Members said that they are closely monitoring developments in the region with the uncertainties brought by the war. PHAP again committed to work with the government to ensure the continued supply of medicines and vaccines in the Philippines.
“Despite the skyrocketing oil prices, PHAP Members are again exerting all efforts to keep medicine and vaccine prices stable, as we implement longer yet safer alternative logistical routes for medicines coming from the affected region. Aside from the war, we continue to monitor any sudden spikes in COVID-19 cases and their potential impact,” PHAP said.
At the start of the pandemic, PHAP Members implemented measures to mitigate supply risks in the country, such as chartering flights and seeking alternative sources for needed medicines, despite strict global lockdowns. While these measures have significantly impacted the cost of operations, these additional costs were absorbed by PHAP Members without passing them on to patients.
PHAP Members are in close coordination with their regional offices, and with the Government, regarding the status of medicine supply in the country.
“Both the COVID-19 pandemic and war in Ukraine are highlighting the resolve, expertise, and resiliency of the men and women of the PHAP Members to respond to health emergencies. We will also continue to provide recommendations to the Government on ways to make medicines and vaccines available to Filipino patients as the country faces the pandemic and the consequences of the war in Ukraine,” PHAP added.
PHAP said that to attain pharmaceutical security in the country, fostering an open and collaborative dialogue in the discussion of medicine supply and pricing concerns would be necessary.
Meanwhile, PHAP expressed support for the efforts of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) which is working to address the healthcare needs of the people affected in Ukraine, Russia and neighboring countries.
PHAP echoed the EFPIA call for the safe passage of medicines and vaccines to those in need as part of wider humanitarian efforts. Among the EFPIA Members that are offering humanitarian support for Ukraine and neighboring countries are Astellas, Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, MSD, Roche, Merck, Novartis, Pfizer, Sanofi and Takeda. These companies also have local presence, and are likewise members of PHAP. In the Philippines, the PHAPCares Foundation works with PHAP in creating a shared value for sustainable development. Established in 2003, the PHAPCares Foundation is supporting healthcare system strengthening, and addressing the health needs of communities affected by poverty, sickness, calamities, health emergencies and armed conflicts.