Patients are struggling to find medicine in France: Report
French medical authorities confirm a shortage of antibiotics prescribed mostly to children.
Amid epidemics such as Covid-19, flu, and bronchiolitis and a shortage of medicines in France, patients are struggling to find pediatric forms of paracetamol and amoxicillin in most pharmacies, Anadolu Agency reported.
The Turkish news agency cited Souhil Cherraben, a pharmacist in Paris, as saying that the shortage is affecting a lot of medicines, warning that "serious shortages affect amoxicillin which is an antibiotic for children."
The pharmacist said, "The shortage started at first for amoxicillin syrup. The pharmacies tried to find solutions by replacing it with amoxicillin tablets for adults -- which can be given to children when cut in half. As a result, we have neither amoxicillin syrup nor amoxicillin tablets," he said.
Cherraben indicated that doctors were told to prescribe other antibiotics, leading to a shortage.
Last week, the National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products (ANSM) confirmed a shortage of antibiotics prescribed mostly to children.
The French Ministry of Health indicated in mid-December that shortages of antibiotics and paracetamol for children will continue for a couple of weeks.
The ANSM highlighted that in 2022, almost 3,000 medicines were subject to supply issues.
Remi Salomon, president of the Conference of Presidents of Medical Establishment Commissions of University Hospitals in France warned that "The current COVID wave in China will likely worsen our supply issues for many medicines," stressing the need to "relocate production in France" to avoid shortages and health disasters in the future.
It is noteworthy that the founders of the Observatory of Transparency in Medicines Policy underlined in March the need to produce medicines in France and Europe to reduce dependence on multinational pharmaceutical companies.
French doctors strike to demand fee hike, better conditions
Doctors in France went on strike for a week, starting December 26, in order to demand an increase in consultation fees and better working conditions, effectively shutting down the country's healthcare delivery system.
General practitioners and other specialties began the strike on Monday and will continue until January 2, according to French media.
The one-week nationwide strike is being organized by the collective Doctors for Tomorrow (Medecins pour demain), as well as trade unions SML (Syndicat des Médecins Liberaux), FMF (Federation des Médecins de France), and UFMLS (Union Francaise pour une Medecine Libre).
Doctors are calling on their colleagues to close their offices and demand an increase in patient admission fees from 25 euros ($27) to 50 euros, as well as better working conditions, according to a BFMTV report.
The French healthcare system is in the grip of a never-before-seen crisis. Last summer, medical workers went on strike across the country, demanding higher wages and denouncing the government's healthcare policies.
The wage dispute with the government comes as France struggles with rising inflation and worsening economic conditions.
In recent months, similar strikes have occurred in other European countries, including the United Kingdom, as a result of a cost-of-living crisis.