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Central Coast pharmacies face supply chain shortages

Best Care Pharmacy and Home Medical Equipment
Posted at 8:54 AM, Dec 30, 2021

At Best Care Pharmacy and Home Medical Equipment, clients can get the COVID-19 booster shot but other products are in short supply.

“So home oxygen unit concentrators are in short supply as ventilators, you know, currently not available. We have placed an order three months ago and it's still pending,” said owner and pharmacist Pashmina Patel.

Patel told KSBY that many of their products are manufactured overseas, so it has been difficult coordinating those items and their transportation to the United States.

“Those are our lifeline can be for many people. And if they can't, you know, if they can't breathe and they can't get oxygen equipment, that's life threatening. So it could be dangerous. Even if their lifesaving medications are not available, it could be dangerous for the people who do need it,” explained Patel.

The pharmacy ran out of at-home COVID-19 tests last week.

“So supply chain issues are occurring for multiple different reasons in manufacturing. If people are not able to work and you do, they if they've been exposed to the COVID or if they're sick or, you know, they have a family that's been exposed to it to care for it at home. So then production slows down, then we're having issues in our transportation at the port,” she said.

Patel said that even if a shipment made it to port, there may not be enough people to unload or there may not be enough trucks to haul the supplies.

“That's because of COVID and because of the added cost. People are paying more money for a shipment. People are paying more money for transportation. And people have to pay overtime to the employees to, you know, meet the demand,” said Patel.

She says they’ve had to raise the price on some items by 20 to 30%.

The owner of Best Care Pharmacy is also a pharmacist and said, she believed if more people obtained their COVID-19 vaccines, it would help with the supply chain issue.