It’s that time of year when a number of illnesses are swirling around, with children among the most susceptible.
“The illnesses that were suppressed before, they’re coming back with ferocious appeal,” said CentralMed Urgent Care & Primary Care’s Dr. Nosa Aigbe Lebarty. “I mean, it’s ferocious.”
Those illnesses include the flu and respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV. The perfect storm of sorts is creating even more headaches for parents looking to treat their children.
“We have experienced the backorder or shortages of over-the-counter Tylenol and Motrin,” said Caring Wellness Pharmacy’s Sam Awad.
The shortages mean the fever-reducing medication is hard to come by.
“Most people, they come and look for a specific thing,” Awad said. “And sometimes I get the question as soon as they enter the pharmacy, like ‘do you have Tylenol in stock?’ ”
Right now, the answer is likely no. A quick trip to several pharmacies around the Capital Region Tuesday showed the lack of supply is evident.
“I have not seen shortages that affect multiple medications at one time,” Awad said, referencing a shortage of some antibiotics as well like amoxicillin.
It’s unclear when the supply of these medications will catch up with the demand.
“You know, manufacturers have sensed this demand now,” Awad said. “They’re in production, so I don’t think it’s going to be a while.”
In the meantime, doctors say aside from your typical home remedies, there aren’t any real alternatives.
“There have been a lot of improvisation going around,” Lebarty said. “So we try to manage the best we can.”
Johnson & Johnson Consumer Health, the manufacturer of these medications, says it is well aware of this increased demand and is currently maximizing its production capacity by running sites 24/7.
The company released a statement Tuesday that said in part:
“Some products may be less readily available due to this increased demand but we are not experiencing an overall shortage of Children’s TYLENOL® or Children's MOTRIN® in the United States. We will continue to work with our retailers to provide these products throughout the Cold & Flu Season.”