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Novartis’ Maalox acid relief OTC shortage causes concerns

1 June 2012

Novartis Nebraska plant closure, owing to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) raising serious concerns over manufacturing, has led to shortage of Maalox acid relief over the counter (OTC) drug in Canada.

The shortage is said to have come about at the Novartis' plant manufacturing large number of OTC products, including Benefibre, Buckley's, Excedrin, NeoCitran, Otrivin and Triaminic.

In March 2012, Novartis Canada said that there could be possible shortage of the number of OTC products and was not sure to when they would supply, owing to the upgrade going on at its manufacturing facility.

CTVNews.ca was reported saying that various drugstores are posting 'out of stock' signs on shelves where Maalox products are generally available.

The facility, which is said to in the process of upgrading, is located in Lincoln, Nebraska, and it was previously closed down in December at the same time when the firm had recalled some bottles of its Excedrin, Bufferin and Gas-X products, due to the concerns that the bottles possibly could contain broken tablets or stray pills from other medicines.

Novartis US added that the temporary shutdown will help the firm accelerate maintenance and improvement and in strengthening standards at the facility.

Novartis, at the same time, said that it planned to gradually resume operations at the Lincoln site after the upgrade and after an agreement with the FDA.