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Tara Vijayan, MD: Combating Drug Scarcity

High-risk individuals should be targeted when drug scarcity comes into play.

Drug scarcity are a major problem in medicine that was only exacerbated during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In fact, during the height of the pandemic when new and effective drugs to combat the virus were produced, drug scarcity involving these drugs was a huge issue.

With more and more patients being hospitalized with COVID-19, particularly in inner cities and minority communities, there was a need to disperse the drugs in a fair and equitable way.

In an interview with HCPLive®, Tara Vijayan, MD, assistant professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases and medical director of antimicrobial stewardship at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, explained some of the issues with drug scarcity and how exactly primary care physicians can combat this issue.

“This is an ongoing issue, not just with novel therapeutics, but with drugs that we’ve had for a long, long time,” Vijayan said. “Drug scarcity is going to be an ongoing issue and really prioritizing individuals who are at the highest risk is really important, both highest risk for progression and highest risk for exposure by virtue of being in certain communities that have lower access to certain resources.”

However, Vijayan did say that it has come a long way in this area and changes are beginning to take hold.

Vijayan recently gave a keynote address during Pri-Med West 2022 in Anaheim.