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Two months after tornado strikes North Carolina facility, manufacturing will undergo a phased approach, with full capacity expected by the end of 2023.
Pfizer has restarted most of its manufacturing lines at the Rocky Mount, NC facility, following severe damage from a tornado that hit the site on July 19. The resumption of production also includes the launch of one line in the site’s new sterile injectable manufacturing area referred to as R3, a module approved earlier this year by the FDA. This marks the first step toward full recovery for the plant, as Pfizer is restarting production through a phased approach, with full production across the site’s three manufacturing suites anticipated by the end of the year.
Production restart has been prioritized based on patient need and inventory levels. There are approximately 13 medicines in production on the lines that have restarted, including products that are currently available through Pfizer’s emergency ordering process. The first shipments of these medicines to distribution centers are anticipated in Q4 of 2023.
While manufacturing has resumed, it is important to note that some medicines may not be back in full supply until next year. The impact of the tornado on the site is expected to affect the supply of medicines from the Rocky Mount facility until at least mid-2024.
Pfizer has also begun storing non-production related materials, including packaging components, in a new warehouse secured as a temporary replacement to its HiRise warehouse, which was most affected by the tornado.