WATCH: Health minister on drug shortage: problem "solved"
Health minister Eric Hoskins says he sees the cancer drug shortage "as being solved."
NEWSTALK 1010 broke the news on Monday that MacKenzie Health in Richmond Hill had to cancel chemo appointments for 35 patients after it ran out of the drug needed for FU-5 treatment.
Later in the day, Health Canada responded by releasing 3,600 previously quarantined vials of chemotherpy drug Fluorouracil.
The vials were quarantined as a precaution by the manufacturer last fall, over concerns about broken or compromised containers.
On Tuesday, health minister Eric Hoskins said the drug is being shipped to the Richmond Hill hospital and it will give the companies that supply the drug time to restock their inventory.
"I see the problem as being solved," Hoskins said.
WATCH: Health minister Eric Hoskins says he sees the cancer drug shortage problem "as being solved" pic.twitter.com/xzyA3i8fTO— NEWSTALK1010 (@NEWSTALK1010) March 7, 2017
He added that there is an effective system in place to prevent any hospital from running out of a drug. They are to alert the provincial agency Cancer Care Ontario that their inventory is running low, and the agency can then shift drugs around the province to ensure every facility is properly stocked.
"I'm not going to point fingers," Hoskins said, on why the process did not prevent a shortage at MacKenzie Health this time around.
Hoskins says his ministry is looking at the overall process to see if it can be improved, but he stressed that this is a national issue.
"I think there are lessons to be learned," he said.