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Hospitals and Health Systems Stock Up on Pandemic Medications for Potential Second Wave

Analysis  |  By Melanie Blackman  
   July 16, 2020

A survey from Premier found 88% of acute care provider members are stocking 'critical' medications in preparation for the next COVID-19 patient surge.

According to a new survey from Premier Inc., 88% of the company's member hospitals and health systems are "building up safety stocks" of medications to prepare for another coronavirus patient surge.

The survey was conducted from June 11 to 29 and surveyed almost 90 health systems in the United States.

Fifty-one percent said they are building at least a one-month supply, while 25% of members say they are planning to stock up with a two-month supply.

The following drug classes used to treat COVID-19 were cited as part of the drug supply stocks:

  • 92% said they will stock sedatives such as midazolam and propofol
  • 91% said they will stock neuromuscular blockers such as cisatracurium and vecuronium
  • 88% said they will stock controlled substances such as fentanyl and morphine
  • 81% said they will stock agents for rapid intubation such as rocuronium and succinylcloline
  • 75% said they will stock vasopressors such as norepinephrine and vasopressin
  • And 51% said they will stock up on induction agents such as etomidate

A different survey from Premier in June found that "nearly 90% of healthcare providers are contributing to stockpiles of critical medical supplies and drugs intended to last as long as 90 days," and that stockpile efforts should be a national and regional effort.

Additionally, Premier released "Reflections and Recommendations on Preparing for the Next Surge of Pandemic" in June, where it offers guidelines on factors it thinks will help in the future, what has worked up to this point such as fast-tracked regulatory flexibilities and waivers from the CDC, FDA, CMS, and the events that led us to the current situation.

Melanie Blackman is the strategy editor at HealthLeaders, an HCPro brand.

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