Protecting the UK’s generic medicines supply post COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged all areas of society. The impact has been particularly acute in the healthcare system, with unprecedented demand for medicines globally.

A new report by the British Generic Manufacturers Association (BGMA) has highlighted the close cooperation and coordination between the generics industry, government and the NHS which ensured patients continued to receive the medicines they needed during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic – in the face of unparalleled pressure on the medicines supply chain due to high demand.

Generic medicines, which make up four in five of every prescription medicines in the UK 01, were central to the treatment of hospitalised patients during the peak of the first wave. Figures show that during the pandemic demand for these medicines soared, and this was coupled with transport restrictions worldwide which made it more difficult to bring products into the UK from abroad. 01

Despite these challenges, generic manufacturers including Teva successfully worked around the clock to ensure that patients did not go without the vital medicines they rely on.

Discover how the UK generics industry works in this short animation from the BGMA:

In its report, the BGMA is recommending to the UK government a coordinated strategy to make sure the UK’s supply of generic and biosimilar medicines is protected in the future by:

  • Building a strategic reserve for the most important medicines
  • Making sure UK’s intellectual property regime continues to attract generic and biosimilar manufactures to the UK
  • Encouragement of policies that prioritise resilience for the supply of medicines, in addition to cost effectiveness
  • Decreasing reliance on India and China by targeting investment to support manufacturing of supply closer to home

You can read the full report here. At Teva we’ll continue to work closely with the BGMA, the wider pharmaceutical industry, the government and the NHS to make sure that we keep medicines moving for patients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

Original Teva Ref: COB-GB-NP-00015
Date of preparation: November 2020

Find out more information


  1. Back to contents.

    Strengthening the resilience of the global supply chain. British Generic Manufacturers Association. [Last accessed: November 2020]

Date of preparation: August 2021
Reference: COB-GB-NP-00038

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