US hospitals grapple with prolonged injected opioid shortage

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US hospitals grapple with prolonged injected opioid shortage

Addiction and overdoses aren’t the only U.S. opioid crisis: Hospitals are frequently running out of widely used injected painkillers.

Manufacturing shortages are forcing many doctors and pharmacists to sometimes ration injected opioids, reserving them for the patients suffering most. Other patients get slower-acting or less effective pain pills, alternatives with more side effects or even sedation.

Doctors and pharmacists say some people having surgery, fighting cancer or suffering with severe burns aren’t getting adequate pain control. They also say shortages frequently cause medication switches that could lead to deadly mistakes.

The American Medical Association this month declared drug shortages a public health crisis. Medical groups are urging regulators to help resolve the opioid shortage, the worst one in two decades.

Sourse: abcnews.go.com

US hospitals grapple with prolonged injected opioid shortage

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