I-Team helps family find answers for COVID-19 drug in short supply


LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — There is a shortage of a drug used to treat COVID-19. 8 News Now first told you about the need for Remdesivir on Tuesday.

A family has turned to the I-Team for help. Thankfully, after we intervened, more of the vital drug is being sent to a hospital, hopefully for their loved one.

Remdesivir is given to coronavirus patients who are hospitalized with respiratory issues.

According to the Board of Pharmacy, the State gets a limited supply through the federal government. The board works to make sure hospitals get it, based on need.

In May, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization for COVID-19, stating the drug’s known and potential benefits outweigh the risks.

The last delivery to Nevada for a two-week supply is enough for 266 patients, according to the board. The next delivery is expected Friday or early next week, which is expected to be enough for 446 patients.

In Nevada, more than 1,100 are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 or suspected to have the virus, according to the Nevada Hospital Association.

After our story aired Tuesday, a family reached out, saying their loved one at St. Rose-Dominican Hospital needed the medicine, but they were told it was not available.

We reached out to the Board of Pharmacy, and the executive secretary said he would then arrange for the drug to be picked up from another hospital to bring to St. Rose.

A spokesman for St. Rose sent the I-Team the following statement:

Local stock of Remdesivir is currently being re-allocated within the market. We expect to receive a supply today. We also expect another shipment next week. Together, our pharmacists and infectious disease specialists are caring for our patients and dispensing medications according to ethical and medical guidelines. And as always, we continue to consider all appropriate treatment options for our patients.”

St. Rose-Dominican Hospital spokesperson

We reached out to the Governor’s Office, and a spokeswoman says the State has been working with FEMA to track shipments of the drug to Nevada.

This week, Gov. Steve Sisolak placed a call to Vice President Mike Pence and made the request that Nevada would like an increase in allotment of Remdesivir. The request is still pending.

Again, Nevada is in short supply of the drug, and more people are being diagnosed with COVID-19.

The Board of Pharmacy was very willing to help when the I-Team reached out to try to get the family answers.

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