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FDA identified 20 drugs with shortage risks due to coronavirus outbreak

A picture shows empty shelves where hand sanitiser gels have sold out in a drug store in London February 4, 2020. - Pharmacies and drug stores say they have seen a spike in sales of hand sanitiser amid concern about the outbreak of Coronavirus. (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS / AFP) (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

NEW YORK, Feb 25 (Reuters) - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has contacted producers of about 20 drugs that either source all of their main ingredients from or are finished in China to gauge if they will face shortages due to the coronavirus outbreak.

None of the companies reported that a shortage is expected for their drugs due to the outbreak, an FDA spokeswoman said.

"We have been in contact with those firms to understand if they face any drug shortage risks due to the outbreak," FDA spokeswoman Stephanie Caccomo said in a statement late on Monday. "None of these firms has reported any shortage to date."

Caccomo did not identify any of the drugs or the companies.

She said the FDA has also reached out to more than 180 manufacturers to remind them of their requirement to notify the regulator of any expected supply disruptions.

U.S. officials raised concerns this week about the security of the U.S. drug supply chain in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak in China, where a significant portion of the ingredients used to make prescription drugs is manufactured.

Around 88 percent of the active pharmaceutical ingredients used in drugs for the U.S. market were manufactured overseas in 2018, according to the FDA https://www.fda.gov/media/131130/download. About 14 percent of the API for U.S. drugs in that year were produced in China, the FDA said. (Reporting by Michael Erman; Editing by Dan Grebler)