Concerns Over Ozempic Supply

TD Cathal Crowe Voices Concerns

Clare TD Cathal Crowe has raised serious concerns regarding the supply of the controversial Ozempic drug after a Clare woman experienced judgmental behavior from a pharmacist while trying to fulfill her prescription.

Ozempic: The ‘Miracle’ Weight Loss Drug

The controversial drug, used to treat type 2 diabetes and obesity, has recently been touted as a miracle weight loss solution. Its popularity has surged, especially among Hollywood celebrities seeking quick weight loss results. In Ireland, Ozempic is licensed solely for diabetes treatment, though some doctors are prescribing it off-label for obesity. The Irish Pharmacy Union reports that the drug has been in short supply, forcing patients to search multiple pharmacies.

Incident at the Pharmacy

Speaking in the Dáil this week, TD Crowe recounted an incident involving a Clare woman who struggled to find Ozempic.

Pharmacist’s Questionable Conduct

“I raise the issue of the supply of the drug Ozempic. Someone called into one of my advice clinics this week. She has been prescribed Ozempic by her GP and had gone to many pharmacists in County Clare and beyond trying to get this all-important medicine. When she went into one pharmacy, the pharmacist looked her up and down and asked her if she had diabetes or was obese. He asked this question in front of a queue of people.

“Since when have pharmacists had a role in terms of diagnostics? If this person I mentioned appears at a pharmacy with a script, surely the intention is that it will be fulfilled and handed over to her, and then she will make her payment,” he said.

Call for Official Guidance

Crowe called for the Minister of State to address the Ozempic supply issue and provide clear guidance to pharmacists on dispensing the drug.

“Could the Minister of State tell me where the supply of Ozempic is at and if some circular or guidance could come from the Department of Health to give guidance to the pharmacists on who should be getting this drug and how it should be dispersed? Let us get them out of diagnostics or looking people up and down as they queue for this medicine,” he concluded.

Minister’s Response

In response, Minister for Mental Health and Older People, Mary Butler, acknowledged the concerns raised by Crowe.

Addressing Medication Shortages

“I thank the Deputy very much for his question. Some concerns have been raised about shortages of medicines. This is a feature of modern health systems worldwide and a global health problem. I know this can cause stress and anxiety for patients and pharmacists.

Specifics on Ozempic

“Regarding the specific issue raised by the Deputy concerning Ozempic, I will get a written response for him. I do not want to comment on the other issue he raised, but I understand the perspective he is coming from. If people need medication and are prescribed it by their GP, it is very important that they are able to access it from a pharmacy,” she finished.