NYC pharmacies struggling to meet demand amid COVID-19 pandemic

Pharmacies in New York City, which has become known as the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, are facing shortages of basic drugs and supplies like Tylenol and thermometers, CNBC reported. 

One pharmacy on the Upper West Side of Manhattan told CNBC Tylenol is on back order until April 30. Thermometers, gloves and masks are unavailable until May, and Ventolin inhalers, which treat shortness of breath, are only available two units at a time. 

Hydroxychloroquine, which has been touted by the president as a possible "game changer" in the fight against the coronavirus, is in very limited supply across the city and is almost unavailable, CNBC reported. One pharmacy in Brooklyn is only dispensing the drug to patients who previously took it to treat autoimmune disorders. 

AmerisourceBergen told CNBC it is limiting orders of certain drugs to make sure each pharmacy gets at least some product, which the company calls "fair allocation." 

Cardinal Health told CNBC it's limiting distribution of more than 100,000 products, labeled "critical inventory," that have been in high demand since the coronavirus pandemic began. The company said some customers may only receive partial deliveries and some products are out of stock completely. 

"There's a shortage of everything — it's never enough," Evangeline Frezoulis, pharmacy manager at S Bros Pharmacy in Brooklyn, told CNBC. "The wholesalers are not able to supply as many pharmacies as needed."

Some smaller pharmacies in New York City have been telling customers to check large chain pharmacies for supplies they don't have, even though that hurts business for the smaller family-owned pharmacies, CNBC reported. 

Read the full article here

More articles on pharmacy:
CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid coronavirus response updates
Drugs needed to put patients on ventilators in short supply
US pushing unapproved drug from Japan to fight COVID-19

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