The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently launched a new cell phone app for monitoring drug shortages.
Drug shortages can lead to delayed or denied treatments, the FDA said. These shortages may lead medical workers to use different drugs that could have more side effects or could be less effective.
The FDA Drug Shortages app will provide the public with faster access to information about drug shortages in various regions while also alerting the FDA to shortages so the agency can react faster. The app also provides information on discontinued drugs.
Users of the app can find a drug by searching either its active ingredient or its generic name. They can also find a drug through browsing the therapeutic category.
“The FDA understands that health care professionals and pharmacists need real-time information about drug shortages to make treatment decisions,” Valerie Jensen, associate director of the Drug Shortage Staff in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said. “The new mobile app is an innovative tool that will offer easier and faster access to important drug shortage information.”
The free app can be downloaded through iTunes or the Google Play Store.