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National IV fluid shortage: what you can do

There is currently a nationwide shortage of intravenous fluids, especially packaged in large-volume, 1000-mL bags.  The shortage began in January 2014 and is not expected to be alleviated until the middle of the year.  There are two suppliers who dominate the market for intravenous fluids–Baxter International and Hospira–with B. Braun a third, smaller supplier.  The suppliers attribute the shortage to a difficult flu season, but the full explanation for the shortage is not yet clear.

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, together with the Drug Information Service at the University of Utah, have released guidelines to help providers conserve the IV fluids that they are able to obtain.

Sources: Kuehn, B.M.  Nationwide IV fluid shortage threatens care.  JAMA; Apr. 23, 2014.  Click here to access the article:  http://jama.jamanetwork.com/data/Journals/JAMA/0/jmn140027.pdf

American Society of Health-System Pharmacists and the University of Utah Drug Information Service.  Intravenous Solution Conservation Strategies, Mar. 20, 2014.  Click here to access:  http://www.ashp.org/DocLibrary/Policy/Conservation-Strategies-for-IV-Fluids.pdf

Posted by AHA Resource Center (312) 422-2050, rc@aha.org


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