Scarcity of Medicines in Mexico Leaves Trail of Suffering
MEXICO CITY—Soon after President Andrés Manuel López Obrador was elected in 2018, he said the existing system of medication purchases for public hospitals was riddled with corruption that benefited greedy healthcare firms. He promised an overhaul that would lower prices and make Mexico’s public healthcare system look like Denmark’s welfare state.
But the government has struggled to find a fix. Instead, it has ended up buying fewer drugs at higher prices, according to Cero Desabasto, an umbrella group representing 80 organizations of doctors and patients, which recently released a 100-page report detailing widespread shortages. Mexico has now turned to hiring a United Nations agency to buy all the country’s pharmaceuticals.