Sunday, November 01, 2009

Pediatric Tamiflu not easy to come by, parents find

From the Ottawa Citizen:
Some doctors are prescribing a liquid form of Tamiflu, an anti-viral drug, to treat the youngest victims of the H1N1 pandemic. But a shortage of a syrup used to make the children's formula has forced some Ottawa parents to hunt from pharmacy to pharmacy.

The drug can make the flu milder and go away more quickly and may cut the risk of potentially life-threatening complications if taken within 48 hours.

Thomas Hayes, chair of an emergency-planning committee for area hospitals and nursing homes, said Thursday there is no shortage of Tamiflu in capsule form in Ottawa drugstores or hospitals. Capsules are for adults and older children.

"The province has a supply of Tamiflu stockpiled for a pandemic and other anti-virals as well," says Hayes. Supplies are currently on their way to pharmacies.

But the ready-made liquid form of the medicine used for young children has become hard to come by. And now, there is a shortage of a syrup called Ora-Sweet used by pharmacists to mix an alternative formula from adult capsules. ...more

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