Children fever reducer medication shortage hitting Rochester

There’s a nationwide shortage of kid’s pain reliever medication, and we’re feeling the effects in Rochester.
Published: Dec. 13, 2022 at 6:49 PM CST
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – There’s a nationwide shortage of kid’s pain reliever medication, and we’re feeling the effects in Rochester.

Cases of COVID, influenza A and RSV are surging in children across the county.

“Unfortunately, this has created a triple pandemic for kids all over the country,” Mayo Clinic pediatrician Dr. Nusheen Ameenuddin said.

This has caused an increased need for children’s fever reducer medication, but the suppliers can’t keep up.

“Those two factors, have kind of led to hard-to-come-by medication,” Hunt Silver Lake Drug pharmacist and owner Philip Hommerding said.

There are empty shelves across Rochester as pharmacy employees work to find medication, but it’s hard to come by.

“We’re trying to look for it in multiple wholesalers all the time to see if we can get some in stock, and it’s just not always available,” Hommerding said.

Mayo Clinic pediatricians say they are seeing a shortage in both over the counter and prescription drugs used to treat sick kids.

“When kids come in with ear infections, one of our most commonly used antibiotics amoxicillin and Augmentin are things that are in short supply nationwide,” Dr. Ameenuddin said.

Pharmacists are doing all they can to help families, having little control over the supplies they get.

“We just try to provide a different alternative that they can use or try to find them somewhere else,” Hommerding said.

“I think the hardest thing is just having to help parents through that frustration,” Dr. Ameenuddin said.

If your child spikes a fever and you aren’t able to find any fever reducers, doctors recommend against giving your child aspirin.

“Aspirin especially in conjunction with an influenza or influenza-like illness can have some serious complications,” Dr. Ameenuddin said.

Experts also advise against trying to cool your child down.

“Because what will happen is they will actually shiver, that’s the bodies way of increasing the temperature, and that could make something worse,” Dr. Ameenuddin said.

Pharmacists say shipments come around sporadically, and they’re not sure when this shortage will end.

“We are getting some in here and there. I think I ordered one bottle yesterday,” Hommerding said.

Medical professionals say in the midst of rising cases and this medication shortage, prevention is key. Experts recommend getting your child vaccinated if they are able to and to mask up.