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The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has identified approximately 20 drugs at risk of shortage due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

These drugs either source all main ingredients from China or are finished in the country, noted Reuters.

When the agency contacted manufacturers of the identified drugs, none reported an expected shortage due to the epidemic.

FDA spokeswoman Stephanie Caccomo was quoted as saying: “We have been in contact with those firms to understand if they face any drug shortage risks due to the outbreak. None of these firms has reported any shortage to date.

“We will continue to remain in contact with the manufacturers so that we can best help mitigate any potential issues in the future.”

Since 24 January, the agency also notified more than 180 companies to alert the FDA in case of any expected shortages. Also, the FDA asked the manufacturers to assess their entire supply chain, said CNBC.

In a separate development, US President Donald Trump’s administration is seeking $2.5bn from Congress to combat the coronavirus.

According to the White House, more than $1bn of the funds would go towards developing a vaccine, with the remaining allocated for therapeutics and stockpiling of protective equipment such as masks.