Drug Shortages

Market Authorization holders adopt various measures to appropriately and reliably supply Canadians with innovative medicines approved by Health Canada. Despite these efforts, situations may arise that cause a drug shortage in Canada.

On this website, users will be able to view Current and Resolved drug shortages in our Drug Shortage database. As we have only just launched this website, we expect that information in each of these categories will change somewhat in the first few months of operation.

It is important to note that only market authorization holders drugs that are in shortage are referenced in this database.

While this platform is only a first step to reporting drug shortages in Canada, we expect that Rx&D's continued engagement with other industry groups and stakeholders in the pharmacy supply chain will allow everyone to publicly report information that would be most useful to Canadians.

As soon as a market authorization holder knows that it will take longer than 20 days to supply a drug to meet expected patient volumes on an ongoing basis, they will report this as a shortage on the communications platform. It is understood that the inability of a patient to receive their prescribed medicines at the first attempt to fill a prescription may not constitute a drug being in 'shortage', as the drug may be available in other pharmacies or within the wholesale or distribution network (i.e. pharmacy supply chain), usually within a few days. We fully expect that when pharmacies are 'in short supply' of specific drugs, they will continue to do their best to seek alternate sources of an otherwise available medicine in consultation with other pharmacies and professionals within the pharmacy supply chain.