USA hospitals recovering from IV fluid shortage caused by Hurricane Maria


Puerto Rico still hasn't recovered from Hurricane Maria.

Hospital officials, pharmacists and other staff have been devising alternatives and workarounds, training doctors and nurses on new procedures and options, and hitting the phones to try to secure fluids from secondary suppliers.

"It may sound scary to the public but as technicians we know how (much saline) we truly need".

The Puerto Rican Heritage Society said that they're looking to faith following Hurricane Maria.

An Atlanta-area hospital run by Cancer Treatment Centers of America has had to rent special pumps to empty liter-size saline bags into many smaller ones for individual patients, said pharmacy services director Jamie Joy.

"We've been able to substitute giving medicines through a syringe instead of through an IV bag", Dr. Paul Biddinger said.

Baxter is one of the largest manufacturers of this product serving the US market, the FDA said, and the return to the grid for all Baxter facilities means that the unsafe shortages of both pediatric and adult formula amino acids is "also anticipated to improve in the coming weeks".

However, there is not a lot of substitution for hydrating a dehydrated patient that can't ingest fluid, so the shortage of the mini-bags is the biggest issue.

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We've had to make some adjustments, but nothing that affects patients or that patients would even notice.

"Maria came through on September 20, a Category 5, and devastated the entire island", she said.

"We feel a responsibility to help speed power power restoration in Puerto Rico, partly because many of our customers and employees have strong ties to the island, but largely because it's the right thing to do", said Manny Miranda, senior vice president of power delivery for FPL, in a statement. "We get together, we spend all day together".

"What Puerto Rico says is 'Puerto Rico stands up, ' so that means everybody has to stand up, everybody has to pitch in, and you just can't sit and wait for the government to do everything".

"Most people start out thinking their move will be temporary", said Mary Waters, a professor of sociology at Harvard, in an article for news website Vox.

"We're not out of the woods, but it's improved", UVM's Miceli said.

BJC HealthCare has been centrally monitoring and internally managing the shortage since the plants shut down, and we have optimized our inventory over the past several months.