STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Sanofi and Novartis are stockpiling drugs to prepare for Brexit

Medicine is being stockpiled in the United Kingdom in preparation for a messy Brexit.French drugmaker...

Posted: Aug 1, 2018 9:31 PM
Updated: Aug 1, 2018 9:31 PM

Medicine is being stockpiled in the United Kingdom in preparation for a messy Brexit.

French drugmaker Sanofi and its Swiss rival Novartis confirmed Wednesday that they're stockpiling treatments to prepare for a scenario where Britain crashes out of the European Union without a Brexit deal.

Hugo Fry, managing director for the United Kingdom at Sanofi, said the company had secured additional warehouse capacity to increase its stock of medicine in Britain to 14 weeks from the usual 10.

"Sanofi is confident that its contingency plans will ensure that people in the United Kingdom can access the treatments they need," Fry said in a statement.

The action by Sanofi was first reported by The Wall Street Journal. Novartis said in a statement that it was planning to "hold increased inventories" in Britain.

The slow pace of Brexit negotiations has heightened fears in recent weeks that Britain may leave the European Union in March 2019 without a transition deal to keep it temporarily in the bloc's single market and customs union.

Crashing out of the bloc would mean additional red tape and border checks for businesses including drugmakers.

According to Germany's Merck, 35 million packages containing medicines are shipped from the European Union to the United Kingdom each month. Some 45 million packages travel in the opposite direction.

Merck declined to comment on specifics, but said it was planning for a variety of scenarios. Pfizer said that it has "carried out detailed assessments of the supply of all our medicines with the focus on ensuring we will continue to have them available."

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock told the UK parliament last week that the government is working to ensure the "health sector and industry are prepared in the event of a no deal [scenario]."

"We're working with industry to prepare for a potential need for stockpiling — this is exactly the type of contingency planning that you would expect us to be doing," he said.

Related: Messy Brexit could lead to food shortages and grounded flights

Sanofi said that without a transition deal, the European medicines regulator will consider the United Kingdom a third country and place extra controls on any imported medicines.

To prepare for that, it's shifting some jobs in testing, quality control and labeling from the United Kingdom to other European Union countries.

UK pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline also said it would boost its operations in the rest of the European Union ahead of Brexit.

The British government has been accused in recent days of not doing enough to prepare for a messy Brexit.

One battle is over potential food shortages, and whether the government or businesses should be stockpiling supplies. The Food and Drink Federation said this week that the industry does not have the capacity to stockpile supplies.

Huntsville/Madison
Clear
38° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 33°
Muscle Shoals
Clear
43° wxIcon
Hi: 56° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 39°
Huntsville/Madison
Clear
38° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 33°
Decatur
Clear
37° wxIcon
Hi: 55° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 33°
Fort Payne
Clear
35° wxIcon
Hi: 56° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 35°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 432536

Reported Deaths: 6379
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson63523957
Mobile30967562
Madison27627201
Tuscaloosa21122268
Montgomery19495326
Shelby18941126
Baldwin16798188
Lee12901102
Morgan12447129
Etowah11911178
Calhoun11365205
Marshall10322119
Houston8813156
Limestone823176
Cullman8159106
Elmore8056104
DeKalb7796102
Lauderdale773399
St. Clair7705122
Talladega6347109
Walker5993174
Jackson590341
Colbert543274
Blount541186
Autauga527061
Coffee454160
Dale405482
Franklin371948
Russell345712
Chilton340972
Covington334168
Escambia328344
Dallas310196
Chambers297370
Clarke290536
Tallapoosa2665107
Pike258830
Marion250155
Lawrence249150
Winston231442
Bibb219848
Geneva206946
Marengo205229
Pickens198631
Hale180842
Barbour177836
Fayette174528
Butler171358
Cherokee162530
Henry157523
Monroe150718
Randolph143236
Washington139527
Clay128546
Crenshaw121644
Cleburne119724
Lamar119621
Macon119637
Lowndes112536
Wilcox105822
Bullock101428
Perry99118
Conecuh96320
Sumter89726
Greene76723
Coosa62215
Choctaw51624
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 697783

Reported Deaths: 8684
CountyCasesDeaths
Shelby774751156
Davidson71955679
Knox39469429
Hamilton35252335
Rutherford33687294
Unassigned23344129
Williamson21776142
Sumner18551232
Out of TN1599878
Montgomery14836149
Wilson14674160
Sullivan12811216
Blount12197131
Washington12055199
Maury11145127
Bradley1099394
Sevier10663116
Putnam10058149
Madison9232182
Robertson777986
Hamblen7114115
Anderson6904112
Greene6679115
Tipton629668
Coffee571482
Gibson5701114
Dickson549580
Cumberland547075
Bedford538690
Roane528279
Lawrence516869
Carter5156115
McMinn514674
Warren503354
Loudon501650
Jefferson487178
Dyer481687
Monroe464063
Hawkins452672
Franklin416865
Fayette404551
Obion403182
Rhea387056
Lincoln383844
Marshall352938
Cocke350257
Cheatham345731
Weakley342748
Henderson335259
Campbell332940
Giles328674
Carroll314360
White314144
Hardeman312054
Hardin302748
Lauderdale295531
Macon292751
Wayne266021
Henry265558
Overton257446
DeKalb245842
McNairy243642
Haywood241747
Smith233728
Marion232731
Trousdale229414
Scott227831
Hickman227034
Claiborne222930
Fentress214833
Grainger211938
Johnson203533
Morgan192616
Crockett182138
Chester176639
Bledsoe176011
Unicoi168745
Cannon159320
Lake157521
Decatur148328
Polk146617
Union142125
Grundy141422
Sequatchie138518
Humphreys135717
Benton133035
Lewis129921
Meigs116816
Stewart107420
Jackson105823
Perry95525
Clay95326
Houston94422
Moore8299
Pickett68820
Van Buren6727
Hancock4127

Community Events