After Hurricane Maria, IV fluid bags in short supply

Factory that manufactures bags is located in Puerto Rico

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Hurricane Maria caused widespread devastation across the island of Puerto Rico, and now the aftermath is being felt by hospitals here in western Massachusetts.

The FDA says hospitals are experiencing a shortage of IV fluid bags, which are sourced in Puerto Rico. Baystate Medical Center in Springfield is among the hospitals feeling this depletion.

The bags are used to inject drugs intraveneously, and as a result of the hurricane, the manufacturing facility in Puerto Rico that assembles them is not fully in operation. The FDA says that hospitals are specifically seeing a shortage in sodium chloride injection bags.

These products have been on a list of about 90 medical products the FDA has been monitoring since the hurricane.

Baystate Health Chief Pharmacy Officer Gary Kerr told 22News that the shortage has also led them to distribute oral medications, but those who are in need of the bags are getting them. Mercy Medical Center in Springfield is also being affected.

The FDA says that they are actively working to address this shortage.