Speaker at Pharmaceutics and Drug Delivery Systems 2022 - Malak Almutairi
Saudi Food and Drug Authority, Saudi Arabia
Title : Drug Shortage Concepts among Stakeholders in Saudi Arabia



Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA) internal records showed that several pharmaceutical entities are overlapping in their tasks within the system of drug availability in the Saudi market. This may have led to a discrepancy in the awareness and understanding of drug shortage concepts and request process that has been observed by SFDA among stakeholders when reporting drug unavailability or shortage. Additionally, since the pandemic has impacted multiple pharmaceutical companies and health care institutions Therefore, the impact of COVID-19 on drug shortage was also explored in our study.


- To identify stakeholders' understanding of drug shortage and the internal process of reporting a drug shortage to the SFDA.
- To evaluate the satisfaction of stakeholder's on services of SFDA drug availability department.

- To explore the impact of COVID-19 on drug shortage in Saudi Arabia


A cross-sectional study consisting of three separate surveys targeting:

Health care providers and National Unified Procurement Company (NUPCO) registered in Saudi-vigilance

Pharmaceutical companies/storage that are registered in (RSD).  Descriptive analysis such as percentages and frequencies was preformed to describe the knowledge and the practice of the targeted stakeholders.


Healthcare institutions defined drug shortages as the unavailability of the product in the agent's stocks and NUPCO as zero stock and confirmation by pharmaceutical companies of product unavailability.

Positive Feedback on drug availability services; 55% supplying agent's compliance, 69% improving drug availability, and 89% SFDA contribution to facilitating drug availability. Satisfaction with reporting systems was reported by (47%) of healthcare institutions and (43%) pharmaceutical companies. Nonetheless, the COVID-19 pandemic impact drug shortages: pharmaceutical companies identified the highest impact on different medication groups (39.7%) and antibiotics (22.2%). Most Healthcare institutions identified the highest impact on antiviral medications (80%).


Most of the stakeholders had a positive feedback and good satisfaction rate on services of SFDA drug availability department


 Miss Malak Almutairi studied at king Saud University (KSU) and graduated with a bachelor's degree in pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences in 2014. Later on, she did her master's M.Sc. at the University of Albert in pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences in 2019. She is currently working in the Saudi Food and drug authority as a senior researcher specializing in regulatory sciences research since 2020.