dangers for patients and hospitals

Critical Supply
1:27 am
Mon March 18, 2013

Drug Shortages Pose Dangers To Hospitals, Patients

Northern Hospital Pharmacy Director Darrell Estes checks his dwindling supply of a drug used in a variety of treatments.
Credit Michael Tomsic

Around this time last year, many hospitals across the country almost ran out of two life-saving cancer drugs. They scraped by with the help of emergency shipments from overseas.

The availability of those two drugs has improved. But they're still in short supply, as are hundreds of others. They include first-choice chemotherapy treatments and anesthetics that are essential for surgery. It's the new normal, as one hospital pharmacist told us.

This week, WFAE's Michael Tomsic examines the problem in our series Critical Supply. Here's the first of his three reports.

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