Over the past five years, the pharmaceutical supply chain has grown increasingly unreliable. According to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the figure of drug shortages has tripled between 2006 and 2010 (see Figure 1 and Figure 21). In 2010 alone 211 cases were recorded, while in 2011 up to 89 cases were recorded as early as March.2 These shortages range from cancer medication to antibiotics, anesthetics, painkillers, anti-depressants and emergency care drugs. Shortages have grave implications for the provision of healthcare, with hospitals not able to provide the right care causing patients to become ill or even perish. Drug scarcity has also been experienced in Europe where reports have surfaced of shortages in cytarabine, a leukemia drug, Thyrogen, used to treat thyroid cancer, and in Cerezyme and Fabrazyme, essential for the treatment of enzyme deficiency disorders.3 The rise of drug shortages has raised concerns among health care providers and requires effective monitoring by national authorities with possible intervention. Increasing scarcity of medication is a worrying trend, which is likely to continue for the coming decades.