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J Am Pharm Assoc (2003) ; 62(3): 766-774.e6, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1587363


BACKGROUND: The drug supply chain is global and at risk of disruption and subsequent drug shortages, especially during unanticipated events. OBJECTIVE: Our objective was to determine the impact of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on drug purchases overall, by class, and for specific countries. METHODS: A cross-sectional time series analysis of country-level drug purchase data from August 2014 to August 2020 from IQVIA MIDAS was conducted. Standardized units per 100 population and percentage increase in units purchased were assessed from 68 countries and jurisdictions in March 2020 (when the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic). Analyses were compared by United Nations development status and drug class. Autoregressive integrated moving average models tested the significance of changes in purchasing trends. RESULTS: Before COVID-19, standardized medication units per 100 population ranged from 3990 to 4760 monthly. In March 2020, there was a global 15% increase in units of drugs purchased to 5309.3 units per 100 population compared with the previous year; the increase was greater in developed countries (18.5%; P < 0.001) than in developing countries (12.8%; P < 0.0001). After the increase in March 2020, there was a correction in the global purchase rate decreasing by 4.7% (April to August 2020 rate, 21,334.6/100 population; P < 0.001). Globally, we observed high purchasing rates and large changes for respiratory medicines such as inhalers and systemic adrenergic drugs (March 2020 rate, 892.7/100 population; change from 2019, 28.5%; P < 0.001). Purchases for topical dermatologic products also increased substantially (42.2%), although at lower absolute rates (610.0/100 population in March 2020; P < 0.0001). Interestingly, purchases for systemic anti-infective agents (including antiviral drugs) increased in developing countries (11.3%; P < 0.001), but decreased in developed countries (1.0%; P = 0.06). CONCLUSION: We observed evidence of global drug stockpiling in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially among developed countries. Actions toward equitable distribution of medicines through a resilient drug supply chain should be taken to increase global response to future unanticipated events, such as pandemics.

COVID-19 , Antiviral Agents , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cross-Sectional Studies , Global Health , Humans , Pandemics , Time Factors
BMJ ; 372: n311, 2021 02 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1083594


OBJECTIVE: To evaluate whether early initiation of prophylactic anticoagulation compared with no anticoagulation was associated with decreased risk of death among patients admitted to hospital with coronavirus disease 2019 (covid-19) in the United States. DESIGN: Observational cohort study. SETTING: Nationwide cohort of patients receiving care in the Department of Veterans Affairs, a large integrated national healthcare system. PARTICIPANTS: All 4297 patients admitted to hospital from 1 March to 31 July 2020 with laboratory confirmed severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection and without a history of anticoagulation. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The main outcome was 30 day mortality. Secondary outcomes were inpatient mortality, initiating therapeutic anticoagulation (a proxy for clinical deterioration, including thromboembolic events), and bleeding that required transfusion. RESULTS: Of 4297 patients admitted to hospital with covid-19, 3627 (84.4%) received prophylactic anticoagulation within 24 hours of admission. More than 99% (n=3600) of treated patients received subcutaneous heparin or enoxaparin. 622 deaths occurred within 30 days of hospital admission, 513 among those who received prophylactic anticoagulation. Most deaths (510/622, 82%) occurred during hospital stay. Using inverse probability of treatment weighted analyses, the cumulative incidence of mortality at 30 days was 14.3% (95% confidence interval 13.1% to 15.5%) among those who received prophylactic anticoagulation and 18.7% (15.1% to 22.9%) among those who did not. Compared with patients who did not receive prophylactic anticoagulation, those who did had a 27% decreased risk for 30 day mortality (hazard ratio 0.73, 95% confidence interval 0.66 to 0.81). Similar associations were found for inpatient mortality and initiation of therapeutic anticoagulation. Receipt of prophylactic anticoagulation was not associated with increased risk of bleeding that required transfusion (hazard ratio 0.87, 0.71 to 1.05). Quantitative bias analysis showed that results were robust to unmeasured confounding (e-value lower 95% confidence interval 1.77 for 30 day mortality). Results persisted in several sensitivity analyses. CONCLUSIONS: Early initiation of prophylactic anticoagulation compared with no anticoagulation among patients admitted to hospital with covid-19 was associated with a decreased risk of 30 day mortality and no increased risk of serious bleeding events. These findings provide strong real world evidence to support guidelines recommending the use of prophylactic anticoagulation as initial treatment for patients with covid-19 on hospital admission.

Anticoagulants/therapeutic use , COVID-19/mortality , Enoxaparin/therapeutic use , Thromboembolism/prevention & control , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Anticoagulants/adverse effects , COVID-19/complications , Enoxaparin/adverse effects , Female , Hemorrhage/chemically induced , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Patient Admission , SARS-CoV-2 , Thromboembolism/virology , Time Factors , United States/epidemiology