Many citizens who have come in recent days to purchase home corona tests at pharma chains are reporting a shortage of kits to buy. This is an essential product that in quite a few countries around the world is considered part of the effort to quickly identify patients and cut off the chain of infection.
The bottom line is that this is a classic market failure of supply and demand. In Israel, the Ministry of Health has approved only one kit for distribution, despite many kits that have already received FDA approval that the chains are interested in bringing to Israel. This is in addition to not giving the HMOs permission to sell kits in their pharmacies.
In the US, for example, the administration distributes free self.examination kits in schools and other public centers. This is also the case in Canada, the UK, Germany, Italy and France. “We receive thousands of inquiries from parents who are looking for an accessible solution with an immediate answer in real time and we are preparing for widespread distribution throughout the country,” Sagi Yaniv explains. It is so vital that we in Israel also move forward with self.sampling, it saves critical time and simply normalizes life alongside the corona. “
As stated, Sagi’s company cannot at the stage distribute the tests it imports because approval has not yet been received from the Ministry of Health. Remipharm imports two American kits to Israel – “QuickVue At.Hom”, which was approved by the FDA in March 2021 and is in the final stages of approval by the Ministry of Health, and “InteliStab” by Orsher, which was approved by the FDA in June. In her case, too, the distributors are awaiting approval from the Ministry of Health.
The be network says that “currently there is one supplier that provides home corona tests. We receive daily supplies for the chain’s branches and in the past week we have bought thousands of home test kits. ” We have become an excellent country in vaccines but lagging behind in testing. “The prime minister, the health minister and the director general of his office claim in the media that they have opened the market for home and self.tests, but they are not up to date with the regulatory burden behind the scenes.“
“In fact, the office developers have been suffocating the test developers for six months, as in Singapore and Europe, but the Ministry of Health delays and sticks sticks in the wheels. It is important to understand that in invasive and systemic vaccinations, the Ministry of Health “It was enough for FDA approval, and it’s good that it is, but in simple tests that are approved by the FDA, they require validations, lectures, bureaucracy and regulation as if it were brain surgery.“
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said last week that he wants 50 companies of self.testing. However, an examination with factors in the field, shows that at the current rate, only 4 to 5 home examinations will be approved in Israel at best. “We welcomed the recent statements of the Prime Minister, the Minister of Health and the Director General of the Ministry of Health, and now it remains to be seen without unnecessary delays that the statements will become a reality,” said David Pepo, chairman of the Israel Pharmacists’ Association. “Wide and with high availability, so that Israeli citizens will be able to return to routine with a minimum of corona and without restrictions and characters. Colleagues around the world report continuous use of home self.tests and the public in Israel is already begging for immediate solutions.“
The dependence of the market on one supplier is also accompanied by the decision of the Ministry of Health not to authorize the HMOs to sell home test kits in their pharmacies. The National Health Fund estimates that such approval will be received from the Ministry of Health during the next week.
The Be network from Shufersal stated: “Currently, there is one supplier that provides home corona tests. We receive daily deliveries to the chain’s branches and in the last week we have bought thousands of home test kits. In accordance with the existing stock, home corona tests can be ordered at Be branches, on the Shufersal Online website and through the Volt app, as well as performing rapid tests at 20 selected branches. “
Super Pharm stated: “Rhenium Medical is the provider of the rapid tests for Corona that have been approved for marketing to the consumer by the Ministry of Health. At present, it is the only supplier that has goods available in Israel. After approval by the Ministry of Health, the kits went on sale online. Due to the high demand and the supplier’s decision to update the caption on the front of the package, a temporary shortage was caused. This morning, an additional quantity was delivered to the chain’s stores, and in the coming days, goods from another supplier are expected to arrive in Israel. “
The Ministry of Health stated: “There are currently 3 approved home tests in Israel, one of which is imported by two different importers. The tests used have undergone a validation process in Israel and therefore the Ministry of Health can guarantee their quality. It is important to note that in most countries “We can know the quality of the test. We expect that in the coming days the supply of tests will increase significantly and no shortage will be felt. We do not usually refer to specific tests that are in the approval process, but the specified test does not meet the criteria required for validation in Israel.“