‘My child is suffering’: Mission parents furious at shortage of pain relievers

‘My child is suffering’: Task parents furious over painkiller shortage

With pharmacy shelves still empty, missionary parents are scrambling to find common painkillers for children.

The local Facebook page is full of parents pleading with others to share their children’s drugs such as Tylenol and Advil.

“My child is suffering and no one seems to know why the pharmacy doesn’t have something so basic,” one parent wrote. “Is there anyone who can share something extra.”

Another parent was willing to pay double the price for some Tylenol.

“If this helps my baby boy, I’d be more than happy to pay the extra,” the parent wrote.

The Record visited several Mission pharmacies and found the product’s shelves were empty.

Some parents accused other parents of “hoarding” painkillers.

Health Canada says special ibuprofen imported from the U.S. is awaiting distribution, while acetaminophen imported from Australia is also on the way.

It did not say how the expected volume or the inventory would be divided among hospitals.

Barry Power, editor-in-chief of the Canadian Pharmacists Association, told The Canadian Press that while supply chain disruptions have contributed to the problem, unexpected summertime spikes in the spread of respiratory diseases, including COVID-19, appear to be Consumer demand is soaring, Ball said.

Drugmakers are ramping up production to restore stocks of the painkillers for the fall cold and flu season, he added.

A months-long shortage of painkillers and fever reducers for children has left many parents and caregivers rummaging through empty shelves and swapping ideas on drug discoveries.

With media reports raising unfounded concerns that children’s painkillers now require a doctor’s certificate, Ball warned parents against panic buying.

“We really want to reiterate that you don’t need a prescription,” Ball said. “We don’t want to bring people into doctor’s offices and pharmacies with prescriptions if we don’t have to.”

Some children’s hospitals have taken steps to maintain supplies of fluid Tylenol and Advil for admitted patients and are helping to find solutions for discharged children.

The maker of Tylenol said its children’s products are still available in stores and online.

“We continue to experience increased consumer-driven demand and are taking all possible steps to ensure product availability,” Johnson & Johnson said.

A spokesman for Canada Foods, Health and Consumer Goods, an industry group that includes Johnson & Johnson, said Canada has “pockets” of shortages, but downplayed the magnitude of the problem.

“In many cases, if there is a shortage at one pharmacy, those parents who are looking for that product can go to a second pharmacy and it’s usually easy to find,” Anthony Fuchs said.

Cold and flu remedies are in high demand as Canadians emerge from COVID-19 lockdowns, said Michelle Wasylyshen, spokeswoman for the Retail Council of Canada.

There have been rolling shortages of certain painkillers in recent months, with some places hit harder than others, Wasylyshen said.

– Plus additional coverage by Canadian media

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