"Bondronat Wars"

Hi all

Just tried to get my next prescription of Bondronat, to be told that the pharmacy are no longer able to get any from the suppliers. I managed not to shout too loudly or cry in front of a load of strangers, and they very kindly rang Roche to find out how to acquire some (circumventing the distributors, who seem to be at war with the company). Roche said they’ll send my pharmacy a couple of boxes this week, but couldn’t give any assurances that regular supplies would be reinstated via suppliers/ distributors any time soon.

I wanted to warn other Bondronat users about this issue – my pharmacy recommends contacting your pharmacy at least a week before you get your repeat prescription, so they can ring Roche to determine whether/when it can be delivered.

A real faf for us, with no promise of being resolved, but I don’t want to stop the treatment or go onto an alternative – we’ll see what happens next.

Marilyn x (grumpy!)

Hi Marilyn

I’ve only just started on Bondronat, and was told by my pharmacy that they couldn’t get it from the usual suppliers, and that each time I had a prescription they would fill it directly from the manufacturers - but that they can only get the amount on the prescription, they can’t hold any in stock. They did this without much trouble, and it took about 4 days. My pharmacy were really helpful - and even suggested if it had been necessary they would scavenge a few tablets from another prescription to make sure I didn’t go without! I will be making sure I put my repeat prescription in in good time. The same applies to the Femara I have just started - my pharmacy gave the impression this was due to the class of drugs rather than a dispute with their wholesalers, but I may have got the wrong end of the stick on that.

It is a faf - I hope you get it sorted.

finty x

There were a few fairly recent newspaper reports of suppliers being able to make more money, a larger profit from selling Bondronat on to other EU countries. I order mine from the same pharmacy 3 weeks in advance.

Hmmm - that is worrying - I think I’ll do the same.

I was so worried about this a couple of months back that I wrote to my MP. I got a letter back from the Health Secretary which said that they were aware of the problem and had made special provision for chemists to contact the manufacturers directly and obtain enough supplies to fill each individual prescriptions. The problem still occurs sometimes because either chemists don’t know they can go direct to the manufacturer or they won’t because it costs them slightly more. If a chemist tells you they can’t fill your prescription, tell them to phone the manufacturer and if they refuse you can take your prescription elsewhere. There shouldn’t ever be a problem as Roche can send the drugs within three days of receiving a request.

Thanks - that’s good to know.

Yes I understood it was more a problem of (some) suppliers selling stock on rather than Roche themselves.

Luckily my local pharmacy is pretty on the ball about this and they get my tablets very quickly especially if I’ve put my prescription in late. I understand it won’t be stocked as a rule as it is so expensive but I used to re-order when I had started my pack of tablets so it gave 4 weeks notice. However when I had a review of my (vast amounts!) of medicine my GP changed my prescription to 2 months’ worth at a time so I always now have 1 months extra supply along with the pack I’m currently taking. Maybe your GP’s will change your prescriptions?
The downside is the pharmacists now know me by name as I come to collect my tablets with my wheelbarrow :wink:
Nicky xx

Hi all,

Yes, your pharmacy must deal direct with Roche and ALWAYS ask for a new packet when you have just started the one youv’ve got. This policy has worked for me over the last 18 months. The girls at my pharmacy are great in that respect.

I was told that the ‘middle men’ are selling it onto suppliers in Europe where they can get more money for it!!! Dreadful!

Good luck all, Sue x

Hi I had the same problem last month with my repeat prescription - the Boots staff were awful and just said they couldnt get it and didnt know when they would get more supplies. I had to investigate myself and got a number from Roche for them to call to get it direct (good job I am fit enough to do all thr running around) - anyway, they got it within 3 days just as I was running out - will put next repeat in a lot earlier as well !! If anyone wants the number, let me know cos its on a saved email - lots a love Debbie xx

It might just be my local branch, but Lloyds Pharmacy were really helpful - wish I could say the same for my GP who initially prescribed me 14 tablets!

My GP surgery has been “cracking down” on what they consider “early repeat prescriptions” – it’s a financial thing – so I can’t really get mine until I only have a week or so’s worth left at home. But the pharmacy in our health centre advised me that they will ring Roche to order my Bondronat BEFORE they receive my repeat prescription. What good people!

BTW, my GP will only prescribe two boxes (2 x 4 weeks) of Bondronat at a time, despite me being on this drug for over seven years! xx

Hi Marilyn, I only get one box at a time. :frowning:

i get mine from the hospital they give me enough to last till my next appointment with the onc though i have only been on it a year