Egypt's Dollar Crisis Leading to Birth Control Shortage?
Are birth control pills rapidly disappearing from the market?
According to Shorouk News, many pharmacies are reporting that birth control pills have disappeared from the market.
Speaking to Shorouk, a pharmacist who wishes to remain anonymous says stock of the most popular products, such as Genara and Selet, has gradually been dwindling over the past three months, but in the past two weeks, all brands have disappeared. The pharmacist also added that some pharmacies which had large stockpiles took advantage of the shortage by selling their remaining stock at over 200% the normal price.
Dr. Karim Karam, Egyptian Pharmaceutical Trade Company spokesperson, stated that the lack of birth control is being caused by the dollar crisis, as most of the products are imported.
Two brands are allegedly still available from the Egyptian company SID.
The Vice Minister of Health, Maysa Shawky however, has denied that there is any lack of the products in medical centers. She also points out that the Ministry offers programs to educate women on how to implement long-term birth control methods in certain southern cities.
Mahmoud Foaad, head of The Institute For Pharmaceutical Rights, was quoted as saying sales reports showed that in the second half of 2015, pharmacies sold 420 million LE worth of birth control, not including governmental distribution, but the first half of 2016 saw the figure drop to 211 million LE.
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