Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Pharmacists remixing adult doses so kids can receive Tamiflu

From the Globe and Mail:
A worldwide shortage of children's Tamiflu to treat H1N1 infections has the federal government dipping into its national emergency stockpile and pharmacists preparing doses the old-fashioned way – with a mortar and pestle.

Meanwhile, the Canadian spokeswoman for Hoffman-La Roche, the Swiss maker of the antiviral drug, said the order for more of the children's liquid doses won't be ready for another month or so – likely after the pandemic virus has passed its peak.

“We're actively working to bring more product into the country,” Laura Pagnotta said yesterday. “We can't provide a specific date but we are definitely in the queue. And we do anticipate having additional [supplies] available in the next month or so.”

The second wave of the H1N1 virus has not only led to more hospitalizations and additional deaths, it has resulted in more Canadians walking into pharmacies with prescriptions for antiviral medication. In the last week of October, more than 28,000 prescriptions were written for Tamiflu, the highest number since the virus first appeared in April, according to data from the Public Health Agency of Canada. ...more

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