• Tue. Sep 27th, 2022

Add dextrose to the list of critical medical treatments in short supply

ByMadeleine J. Pierce

Aug 5, 2022

EMS teams are scrambling to change their protocol due to a lack of medication, used to treat conditions like low blood sugar, dehydration, and more. Other industry news includes Laguna Honda Hospital in San Francisco, Paloma Blanca Health and Rehabilitation in New Mexico, Cigna, and more.

CIDRAP: emergency medical services faced with a critical shortage of dextrose

Amid shortages stretching back months to more than a year of dextrose syringes and intravenous fluid bags to treat a wide variety of emergency conditions, America’s emergency medical services (EMS) are scrambling to adapt the treatment protocols and organize training on how to use them. Dextrose is an essential drug used to treat conditions such as hypoglycemia, dehydration, acute alcohol intoxication and high potassium levels, or as a carbohydrate in parenteral nutrition. (Van Beusekom, 8/4)

In other health industry news –

San Francisco Chronicle: San Francisco Sues Feds Over Laguna Honda Shutdown

Current and former City of San Francisco prosecutors have filed a pair of lawsuits they hope will end federal efforts to close the Laguna Honda Hospital and Rehabilitation Center next month. (Asimov, 8/4)

The Boston Globe: A reprieve for the last birthing center in eastern Massachusetts

Reproductive rights advocates are breathing a sigh of relief after learning Thursday that a scheduled closure in early September has been postponed for the North Shore Birth Center in Beverly, the last free-standing center operating in eastern Massachusetts. The potential loss had raised concerns about diminished access to maternity services, especially for low-income families and women of color. (Lazar, 8/4)

Stat: Nursing chain’s tangled structure, bankruptcy threats, lawsuits stalled

After a 2016 hospital stay for a brain tumor, Regina Romero was moved to a nursing home in New Mexico. Romero died less than four months after arriving home; she was only 59 years old. (Witlock, 8/5)

The Baltimore Sun: Consortium Led by Johns Hopkins Gets $200 Million to Fight the No. 1 Global Health Threat: Tuberculosis

Johns Hopkins Medicine has received $200 million in federal funding to lead a consortium to treat and stem the spread of one of the world’s oldest and deadliest scourges: tuberculosis. (Cohn, 8/4)

Modern Healthcare: Cigna Quarterly Report Highlighted by Low Medical Spending

Cigna saw its net income rise 6.2% to $1.5 billion in the second quarter due to lower utilization of emergency and surgical departments and lower direct costs associated with the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19, the company reported Thursday. Lower healthcare expenses for fully insured customers, along with repricing of the insurer’s government-sponsored business, caused Cigna’s medical claims ratio to drop to 80.7%. The company reported a medical loss ratio of 84.4% in the same period a year ago. (Tepper, 8/4)

Also –

AP: Pope promotes Vatican nurse credited with saving his life

Pope Francis has promoted a Vatican nurse, whom he credits with saving his life, to become his “personal health care assistant”. The Vatican announced the appointment of Massimiliano Strappetti in a one-line statement released Thursday. Strappetti, the Vatican health department’s nursing coordinator, accompanied Francis on a difficult trip to Canada last month. Francis, 85, last year credited Strappetti with pinpointing an intestinal problem that led the pope to stay in hospital for 10 days in July 2021 to remove 33 centimeters (13 inches) from his colon that had shrunk. … Francis noted that Strappetti’s operation was the second time a nurse had saved his life. (8/4)

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