Civica Rx, a nonprofit founded in 2018 in response to shortages of critical generic medicines in the US, has enlisted Hikma Pharmaceuticals to manufacture a suite of drugs. The non-profit expects to begin distributing the drugs to partners in its hospital network by the end of the year.
Civica was formed to address uncertainty in the market for generic drugs, particularly those commonly used in hospitals. In recent years, the dwindling ranks of suppliers of certain older medicines has resulted in dangerous shortages and spiking prices. The nonprofit believes it can stabilize supply by guaranteeing demand. Through partners like Hikma and, eventually, building its own capacity, Civica will sell drugs at a fixed price to its members—all healthcare providers that commit to buying a certain volume of product.
At its launch, Civica had seven “governing members,” each a hospital network that contributed $10 million to have a say in the nonprofit’s decision making. In January, a dozen more healthcare networks joined as “founding members,” each donating $5 million. In total, some 900 hospitals now have access to the products manufactured by Civica.
The 5-year pact with Hikma fulfills a lofty goal laid out by the nonprofit at its inception: to distribute the first 14 products to its members by the end of 2019. Although Civica has yet to name the specific drugs included in the deal, it says Hikma will make 14 sterile injectable products “used daily by hospitals in emergency care, surgery, pain management, and in treating hypertension.” Hikma says it’s the third-largest US supplier of generic injectable medicines.
The deal is the second sealed by Civica. In May, the Danish firm Xellia Pharmaceuticals agreed to supply the nonprofit with antibiotics including vancomycin and daptomycin.