Pharmacists work together to meet demand amid shortages

Published: Jan. 20, 2023 at 10:41 PM CST
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - Major medicines are down in numbers, causing the number of prescriptions on shelves to shrink.

Pharmacies see hundreds of people a day, keeping pharmacists busy by filling prescriptions.

Now they are working around the clock looking for the medicine to fill orders.

“It does take quite a bit of time, but like I would suggest to anybody work with your pharmacist,” said Rian Snell, pharmacist, and owner at Hilltop Market Pharmacy.

Snell has been a pharmacist for over 20 years. He said recently the number of major prescriptions has dwindled, especially for those used to treat diabetes.

“We saw the first big shortages kind of trickle in at the end of October, started to grow into November, then into December, definitely at the end of the year,” he said.

One resource they are using to keep up with demand is working with other pharmacists.

“Between our stores, we share products and do what we can to get medication to patients,” Snell said.

They also look at other options for patients.

“Work with local providers to give alternative medications when they just don’t exist,” he said. “Sadly we are seeing that quite a bit where patients are having to change therapies to something that is available and being made currently.”

Snell explained they are seeing the amount of some medicines increasing, like Adderall. He hopes that is a good sign for others.

“We are starting to see it come back a little bit, got my fingers crossed that we can continue that,” Snell said.

He added some diabetic medications are being strained because they are also being used for weight loss, causing issues for the manufacturers.

Snell advised working with your pharmacist and doctor on treatment options is the best way to navigate these shortages.