Puerto Rican Governor Ricardo Rossello has criticized the USA federal government's response to Hurricane Maria, which devastated the US territory in September, leaving many in Puerto Rico without power and other basic services that still have not been restored. But officials are confident 95 percent of the power will be back on by March.
The shortage has left hospitals across the country scrambling to work around the lack of IV bags, especially as flu season ramps up.
"You walk into most rooms and you are going to see something hanging on the patient", said Freije.
"We're assessing patients every shift to see if they're taking foods by mouth or eating, if they're drinking and if they need IV fluids".
So far health professionals have been able to find alternatives, training doctors and nurses on new procedures and options and attempting to secure fluids from secondary suppliers, according to the Associated Press.
"We've been approaching this as a unified front and bale to effect changes to preserve our fluid situation very diligently, and we've had to make zero compromises to providing high quality patient care to our community", said Startsman.More news: African countries demand retraction, apology for Trump's comments
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The delegation's schedule includes a stop at Hospital de Nino, which treats children with autism and special needs in San Juan, a health center in Loiza, and a shelter in Canovanas.
But like other states, flu activity in CT has been rising, which could exacerbate the shortage.
That includes CT, which has seen five deaths associated with flu thus far.
From Aug. 27 to January 6, the DPH reported that 1,015 laboratory samples tested positive for the flu.
Almost every state is reporting widespread flu activity. Only a few companies make the solutions and IV bags, which makes it a nationwide problem.
The FDA has been trying to boost supplies, giving two additional companies approval to start selling saline bags, likely within a couple months.