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Norvir Advisory

Question on Supplier Availability of Liquid Ritonavir Formulation

Q. I have a question and a comment. My question is we have been having a difficult time getting liquid ritonavir because the suppliers are all back ordered. I am afraid that this may become a major barrier if this continues for a prolonged period of time. We have been able to deal with this issue by having the rep "wheel and deal" for us. But you need to know that this could become, potentially, a huge issue.

My comment is that I think that having difficulties with the capsules was actually a wonderful thing to have happened. I am a pediatric nurse and we have had to deal with the taste issue for a long time. I think that adults are now faced with this issue will help the company make the needed changes in the taste. Adults with HIV have more lobbying power than kids!

A. I checked with Abbott about your concern about getting the ritonavir liquid formulation from your supplier. The problem apparently was not with the manufacturing, but with a major distributor who provides the drug to local suppliers. I was told by Abbott's public affairs office that the distribution issues have been resolved and that your local supplier should not have any further problem. However, if fir any reason there is a problem, Abbott has an 800 number (1-800-255-5162) posted on their Web site for customer service. I called the number to ask if your hospital could order liquid ritonavir direct. Their answer was yes. This information could be also be helpful to others caring for pediatric patients who might experience a similar problem. So we will be posting this question (no personal identity) and our answer on the Web site.

Your observation on using this situation to get more adults on the liquid formulation advocating for a more palatable option for children is a great idea. I know that several of the Abbott scientists are checking in on this site to find out what recommendations IAPAC is providing. So your comments will definitely have some effect.

Posted 9/4/98

Notice: This is an IAPAC initiative that is under the sole direction of the IAPAC Norvir Advisory Committee. Contents of the Norvir Advisory section of the IAPAC Web site are subject to the approval of the chair of the advisory committee and will reflect the recommendations of the committee members. Abbott Laboratories has no input in the content of the Norvir Advisory section of the IAPAC Web site.