On Monday, September 15th, 2014 the Los Angeles Times reported that Baxter International Inc., the nation's leading supplier of Home Dialysis Solution, said it can't keep up with demand and has started rationing their product, "directing physicians to limit the number of new patients to whom they prescribe the treatment and reducing the size of shipments sent to existing customers."
This comes on the back of several other recently announced medical shortages that have hit the Chronic Kidney Disease community. For instance, the saline shortage which is still in effect has caused hospitals, Dialysis Clinics as well as Chronic Kidney Disease patients to scramble for supplies for crucial treatments. According to a U.S. Government Accountability Office report, the shortages are likely stemmed from product quality problems experienced by manufactures and the inability of other companies to compensate for lost supply.
Well, both Hemodialysis and Peritoneal Dialysis patients should know that Dialysis Clinics and Hospitals are working overtime to find stock and are changing their daily practices to protect patients in the wake of an urgent national shortage of normal saline. Still, the approximately 30,000 Peritoneal Dialysis patients have been "freaking out" over their recent Dialysis Solution shortage announcement.
Recommended Reading: Peritoneal Dialysis (PD) can be Used Safely Long Term
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) suggests that they view this most recent Peritoneal Dialysis Solution shortage as a "critical situation" and has begun reaching out to foreign suppliers in an effort to temporarily import the solution which is necessary for treatment. Moreover, Baxter insists that their recall of tainted Dialysis Solution earlier in the year which accounted for a bit less than 1% of the company's global production, is NOT the main cause of the current massive shortage.
Although Valerie Jensen (Associate Director of FDA, Drug Shortage Program) admits that the recall "worsened the current situation," Baxter suggests that the major factor is rapidly increasing demand. According to the Los Angeles Times, patients choosing to use the Peritoneal Dialysis treatment option "jumped 24% from 2008 to 2011." Similarly, the number of U.S. patients using Baxter's Dialysis Solution increased by 15%.
Here is the good news, Baxter has reached an agreement with the country's only other manufacturer of the Dialysis Solution, Fresenius, to provide it to their clients. What's more, current Peritoneal Dialysis patients' treatments are not expected to be interrupted at this time.
If you are concerned about the shortage, consider asking your Healthcare Team if there are any conservation practices they suggest you should adopt. Visit KidneyBuzz.com for more Daily News and Information about how Chronic Kidney Disease and Diabetic patients can improve their lives.
Most Popular Stories:
"Shortage of In-home Dialysis Solution Has Patients Worried."Http://www.latimes.com. Los Angeles Times.
"Saline IV Shortage: Searching for a Solution." Http://www.denverpost.com/. The Denver Post.
"Drugs-FDA Provides Update on Saline Drug Shortage."Http://www.fda.gov. Food And Drug Administration.