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The long-term impact of drug shortages and how CSI proactively manages them

Updated: Jan 26

The United States is facing an unprecedented shortage of cancer drugs, creating a crisis for thousands of patients nationwide who are experiencing delays or cancellations of their crucial chemotherapy appointments. The impact of these shortages goes beyond current patients, as experts warn that cancer research could suffer significant setbacks for years to come.

The shortages are affecting various ongoing clinical trials and may potentially impact over 174 out of 608 trials conducted by the National Cancer Institute alone. However, this figure does not account for the trials that researchers would like to initiate but are unable to due to scarcity.

The reasons for these drug shortages are complex, with many cancer drugs experiencing fluctuations in supply over the years. Nevertheless, at least 25 cancer drugs are currently facing critical shortages, including carboplatin and cisplatin, which are particularly vital for research due to their broad application across different types of cancers. Cisplatin and other platinum-based drugs are prescribed to approximately 10% to 20% of all cancer patients, as reported by the National Cancer Institute. The consequences of such shortages are far-reaching and hinder the development of new and potentially life-saving cancer medications.

While efforts are being made to address the issue, experts anticipate that cancer drug shortages will persist, denying much-needed help to patients who could benefit from participating in these trials. The situation is adding immense stress to cancer patients and healthcare providers alike, impeding advancements in cancer research and treatment.


Clinical Services International (CSI)’s solution? To deliver proactive strategies and interventions that counteract the risk of drug shortages.

CSI has the expertise

We leverage longstanding relationships with manufacturers who have global coverage to enable better access to medications with low availability. Communication with the drug manufacturer ensures early identification and resolution of any potential supply chain issues. CSI has qualified over 95 leading manufacturers globally, maximising our access to even the most hard-to-find medicines.


Early-stage planning

With our logistical expertise and in-depth knowledge of drug development cycles, we ensure there is enough time to source the required medication for the duration of a clinical trial. CSI will propose a reliable sourcing model to provide sufficient quantities of the drug at the right time.


Diversifying sources of medication

Diversifying the sources of medicine procurement can reduce risk by avoiding the need to rely solely on one source of supply. CSI identifies the best sourcing strategy and alternative drug sources in case the primary supplier experiences any issues. These can be local or global, and a backup plan will always be in place to ensure a consistent supply of medication.


By following these guidelines, CSI minimises the risk of medicine shortages and helps to ensure the smooth running and success of clinical trials around the world.


Contact us to find out how CSI’s team of experts can with assist your oncology trials.


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