Covid-19 medicines are flying off the shelves

Monday April 19, 2021 at 3:08 pm
Ahmedabad: In addition to Favipiravir, nearly all the medicines used in the treatment of Covid-19 are getting sold in no time.
With an increase in the number of positive cases in the city, the sale of various medicines used in the treatment of Covid-19 has increased four times this month, according to the Federation of Gujarat State Chemists and Druggists’ Association (FGSCDA) estimate.
Ivermectin and Doxycycline medicines are in high demand. These are the antibodies used in the treatment of bacterial infections.
In addition to these, the sale of blood thinners that include Ecosprin, cough syrups, paracetamol, multi-vitamins, and Codeine-based preparations are also witnessing huge demand.
Alpesh Patel, president of FGSCDA stated, “Multi-vitamins, particularly vitamin C, D3 and zinc and in some cases even vitamin B-complex are typically prescribed to Covid-19 patients. Besides, their family members who live with them are also prescribed vitamins in addition to azithromycin, as a precautionary measure. If the single-day cases reported in Gujarat have surged 10-fold from March 15 to April 15, the demand for vitamins is bound to increase”.
He further added, “People have been taking multivitamins as immunity boosters as well, which has pushed sales of the medicine further up”.
According to data that the pharma market research firm, AIOCD AWACS has released, there was a decrease in the sale of vitamins across the country (8.6%) when the number of positive cases declined in the month the February but the sale went up to 22% in the month of March.
Ankur Agarwal, founder of Medkart stated, “Given the uncertainty of the situation, people are hoarding more stock of medicines than required. A panic buying tendency besides those who are prescribed vitamins is also fuelling the massive surge”. One of the prime reasons behind the increase in demand is the panic of buying vitamin tablets, cough syrups, paracetamol tablets along with other Covid-related products that include masks, sanitizers, and disinfectants.
According to the members of FGSCDA, the increase in demand has led to a decrease in inventory levels.
Patel concluded, “Usually, chemists keep a week’s inventory. However with an unprecedented surge in demand, the same stock now lasts barely 24 hours and therefore, the turnaround time has clearly reduced. We’re trying our level best to ensure stocks are fast replenished so that medicines can be quickly supplied to people”.