Drug Shortage Alert: Electrolyte Medication

The Society of Critical Care Medicine’s Drug Shortages Task Force has produced a comprehensive guide for assessing and responding to shortages of sodium acetate injection, concentrated sodium chloride, potassium acetate and chloride injection, phosphate injection, calcium chloride and gluconate injection, and magnesium sulfate injection. Manufacturers report a number of reasons for these shortages, including increased demand, manufacturing delays, suspended production, and discontinuation by the manufacturer.

The alert Electrolyte Medication Shortages includes information on the shortage’s impact in intensive care units, including suggested management strategies, pharmacotherapeutic considerations, and safety concerns. The recommendations are based on a combination of current evidence, clinical experience from multiple clinicians, and the need for conservation during these shortages.

Visit www.sccm.org/currentissues to access all Drug Shortage Alerts, including those addressing:

  • Intravenous Sodium Bicarbonate
  • Web Resources
  • Intravenous Loop Diuretics
  • General Considerations

John Lewin, MBA, PharmD, and other members of the Drug Shortage Task Force discuss safe and consistent management of drug shortages as well as on additional resources and strategies.

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