“I can tell you we had some very concerned members who indicated that they’re in danger of running out,” says Michael Ganio, a pharmacist and director of pharmacy practice and quality with the pharmacists group. “Over half said their institution has implemented a conservation plan. It’s something that’s very concerning.”

Medications that require sterile preparation include those needed for treating COVID-19 patients, such as medications to calm, sedate or paralyze patients on a mechanical ventilator. Other medicines in that category supply IV nutrition or boost the blood pressure of patients who develop sepsis or shock.

Geriatric and pediatric patients are also frequent recipients of sterile compounded medications because they need doses tailored to their weight, or have age-related health problems that require specially made medicine they can tolerate.