We have continued to monitor the flumazenil shortage situation and now have some updates for you. We are offering this to you for information purposes only.
To the best of our knowledge, and until now, only one pharmacy in the United States, Pavilion Pharmacy in Atlanta, has been compounding flumazenil into a transdermal cream and sublingual lozenge. Just recently, a second pharmacy, Village Pharmacy, in Lynnfield, Massachusetts, has identified a source for flumazenil, received a very small shipment for testing, and been able to compound it into a transdermal cream.
As mentioned in last week’s SomnusNooze, according to information that we have received from Pavilion Pharmacy, the shipment of flumazenil that they ordered from the importer in Canada has cleared Canadian Health regulations and is awaiting approval from the US Food and Drug Administration before it can be sent to Pavilion. We have no timeframe for when that will occur. Pavilion Pharmacy has identified another source of flumazenil and, two weeks ago, ordered another batch of the drug from this new company. They anticipate receiving the drug from this new company within the next two to four weeks; however, no guarantees are in place.
Village Pharmacy imported a very small amount of flumazenil to test the drug for effectiveness and the drug was shown to be effective. They have currently dispensed the small amount that they ordered.
Because of state pharmacy regulations, Village Pharmacy can only fill prescriptions and send them to people within the state of Massachusetts. They can fill prescriptions for people from outside of Massachusetts, but those people, or their representatives, have to come to the pharmacy to pick up the drug. It cannot be shipped outside the state of Massachusetts. As mentioned above, they can only compound the cream, not the lozenges. Village Pharmacy does accept insurance from several carriers that cover compounded drugs.
Village Pharmacy has placed an order for more flumazenil, but, because of the cost, they have ordered only enough to fill prescriptions for people in Massachusetts. If you have a prescription for flumazenil cream and have a way to pick up the drug at Village Pharmacy, please call them and let them know so that they will order a larger quantity of flumazenil. They anticipate receiving the drug in the next three to four weeks.