China is the leading manufacturer of diagnostic imaging contrast dye. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 related shutdowns, many Texas hospitals are experiencing IV Dye shortages. GE Healthcare in Shanghai China is one of two manufacturers of this diagnostic imaging dye and a two-week closure due to COVID will continue to impact available supplies.
COVID-19 Initial PPE Supply Shortages
At the onset of COVID-19, there was an immediate need for PPE supplies worldwide. This need was greater than anything the world had seen previously at any time! These critical needs included disposable gloves, disposable gowns, face masks, isolation/quarantine items, and more. It took a long period of time to ramp up worldwide production for all needed PPE. In the meantime, medical professionals were struggling to use and reuse their existing supplies of PPE as best as possible. It was clear no one in the world was able to be prepared as fully as the pandemic demanded.
2022 Still Shortages of Sterile Gloves, Tubing, and Needles
The United States is facing major shortages of sterile gloves and tubing which are used in the medical industry every day. According to the CDC, surgeons report these shortages on a daily basis. The problem has gotten so severe that many hospitals have resorted to using single-use items like adult diapers. This issue is likely going to get worse including a needle and syringe shortage throughout 2022.
2022 Greatest Shortage is IV Dye Needed for CAT Scans and X-rays
IV contrast dye is a contrast medium that is used for medical imaging procedures like CT scans, MRIs, and X-rays. It can also be used for ultrasound procedures as well.
The purpose of the IV contrast dye is to make certain organs or fluids appear darker on x-rays or other scans so that they can be viewed more clearly by radiologists and doctors. For example, when you go to get a CT scan or MRI, you are given an IV with this substance in it beforehand so that certain parts of your body will show up better on the images taken during the procedure. This helps doctors decide where something might be wrong with your body before any invasive procedures are performed such as surgery or biopsies.
GE Healthcare of Shanghai COVID Shutdown
Shortages of diagnostic IV dyes used for X-rays and cardiac catheterization have been reported by a number of hospitals across the country. The dyes are used to show up blood vessels and other body structures on X-rays and CT scans.
The current shortage has forced some hospitals to cancel procedures or delay treatment plans for patients with cancer and other illnesses. The problem is compounded by production issues at GE Healthcare’s facility in Shanghai, China, which supplies most of the world’s diagnostic dyes. GE Healthcare was forced into a two-week production shutdown due to COVID. The facility will resume production at the end of this week. This facility manufactures several different types of IV dyes including Indocyanine Green (ICG), Thallium, Iodinated Contrast Media (ICM), Sodium Chloride, and Potassium Chloride. GE Healthcare has stated that they are working hard to resume production, but it will take some time before all supplies are available again.
How Medical Supply Startups Can Help
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