Extent of a valsartan drug shortage and its effect on antihypertensive drug use in the Canadian population

A national cross-sectional study

Drug shortages are a concerning global issue. Disruptions to drug availability and the accompanying increase in demand of alternative therapies has potentially serious implications for patients, clinicians and the health care system.

Causes of drug shortages can be complex and multifactorial, with an example being the recall of valsartan, an angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) drug that is predominantly used to treat hypertension and heart failure. This study examines the effects of a recall and shortage in July 2018 of valsartan, as well as other antihypertensive drugs, in Canada.

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