Dispensaries in central Texas continue to experience shortages of children’s medicines
Medsavers Pharmacy said some wholesalers only allow pharmacies to buy just one or two bottles of certain over-the-counter children’s medicines per day.
AUSTIN, Texas – Caring for sick children has become particularly stressful for many parents in central Texas recently due to the shortage of Tylenol and other pediatric medicines.
Doctors and other experts say the problem could linger during the cold and flu season, which ends in May, but a surge in other respiratory illnesses has led to a surge in demand for antipyretics and other products people can buy without a prescription.
Austin Pharmacy owner Medsavers pharmacy Chris Johnson said his store’s shelves began emptying in September.
“It’s consistent with what we call the trifecta of problems that we’ve seen — respiratory problems in the United States,” Johnson said. “RSV hit, COVID of course had another surge, and then we had the flu too.”
Johnson said his store hasn’t yet restricted customers from buying a certain amount of over-the-counter children’s medicines, but envisages doing so in the future.
“[It’s been] It’s really difficult, things like Tylenol, ibuprofen, even liquid Zyrtec, liquid Benadryl, allergy meds … it’s really difficult to stock them,” Johnson said.
CVS Health has set a two-product limit for all pediatric pain relief products purchased at its pharmacies or online.
Walgreens limits customers to six online purchases of children’s antipyretic products. This limit does not apply in stores.
Johnson said some wholesalers only allow pharmacies to buy just one or two bottles of certain over-the-counter children’s medicines for their stock each day. He added that in addition to over-the-counter products, the prescription antibiotic amoxicillin is also in short supply due to increased demand and has sometimes been unavailable in local pharmacies. The drug is commonly used to treat nose and throat infections in children.
Tarrytown Pharmacyalso locally in Austin, repeating the same problems.
“We’ve been very busy, but luckily we’ve been able to take care of all our patients,” said senior pharmacist Rannon Ching. “By either getting them an alternative or by trying to keep a list and letting them know when something is available.”
Ching said alternatives to certain children’s drugs are something anyone can ask a pharmacist about, and in many cases alternative options are available. He said it’s important to use the right measurements and dosages; something a pharmacist can also help with.
When comparing infant Tylenol to children’s Tylenol, Ching said this is a good example of alternatives you can use.
“It’s the same product, but it’s packaged and marketed differently,” Johnson said.
Experts say some adult medications can be converted to a child’s dose because there are ways to cut, split or mix them – but parents should never determine the correct dosage themselves and ask a doctor or pharmacist what they are administering to her child.
Both Medsavers Pharmacy and Terrytown Pharmacy also have compounding labs, meaning the pharmacies can make medicine for your child with a prescription.
Johnson said this happens to some degree every year during the winter months.
“It’s a little more severe than what we usually go through, but it happens every year with multiple types of drugs,” Johnson said.
https://www.kvue.com/article/news/local/central-texas-pharmacies-continue-to-experience-child-medication-shortages/269-6b45231c-59b2-4745-bdf1-a78a527e7bc6 Dispensaries in central Texas continue to experience shortages of children’s medicines