IV shortage hits central Wisconsin hospitals - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

IV shortage hits central Wisconsin hospitals

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WAUSAU (WAOW) -

Hospitals around the nation and right here in central Wisconsin are facing a big problem: a shortage of IV bags.

"We are experiencing the shortages here at Aspirus, primarily in the smaller bags of IV fluids that we use to give the medications," said Jill Michaud, the director of the pharmacy at Aspirus in Wausau.

It started months ago after Hurricane Maria ravaged Puerto Rico, a major manufacturer for the bags.

"The shortage really started in earnest mid-October," said Michaud. "That's when the hurricane started to impact solutions."

Hospitals like Aspirus are having to adapt to the lack of supplies.

"Instead we have moved some medications to giving them in a syringe," said Michaud. "That's one of the ways we've adapted."

Michaud said patients are still getting the fluids and medications that they need, they've just had to adjust their processes.

The problem may not go away any time soon, it could still be until summer or fall for production to be back to normal. Right now, the FDA has approved receiving IV bags from other countries like Australia.

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