Tensions on paracetamol: Doliprane, Efferalgan… limited access for patients as winter approaches

The National Medicines Safety Agency warns pharmacists and prescribers in a context of “prolonging supply tensions”, “as the winter season approaches and during the resumption of the Covid epidemic. -19”.

No more than two boxes per patient at the pharmacy counter without a prescription: quota since July 2022 in a context of supply tensions, paracetamol will remain difficult to access “as the winter season approaches and during the resumption of Covid-19”, announces jointly the ANSM (National Agency for the Safety of Medicine), the College of General Medicine and the pharmacists’ unions.

They invite to “moderate the use of paracetamol” to “allow patients who have an immediate need to be able to benefit from it”.

“Do not store”

No more than two boxes in pharmacies without a prescription, therefore, but also a privileged dispensation on prescription, and a limitation of online sales for pharmacists, invited to discuss with their patients to act on a case-by-case basis.

For prescribers, that is essentially treating doctors: “Avoid prescribing paracetamol to your patients who do not have an immediate need for it” and “when the situation permits, prefer a dose of three doses daily every 8 hour instead of four doses per day every 6 hours”.

Patients are also encouraged to “not build up a stockpile.”

In July, ANSM had already warned of tensions in a context of high consumption since the start of the Covid crisis. A cyclical situation combined with a structural problem: the active ingredient in paracetamol is no longer produced in France.

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