Oklahoma Families Scrambling Due To Tami-Flu Shortage
OKLAHOMA CITY - Our state is in the midst of a deadly flu outbreak. The CDC rates Oklahoma in "Red" for high activity.
Local health experts say this is the worst outbreak in more than decade, with children being especially hit hard. Now, News 9 is learning there is a shortage of the flu medication for kids.
When Lisa Toombs’ daughter first started showing signs of the flu, she rushed her to the doctor so she could get her the medication as soon as possible.
“I go pick up the prescription and they tell me they don’t have Tami-Flu. So, I ask them if they are able to order it and she tells me, ‘No’ that it is on back order right now.”
Her pharmacy couldn't find the drugs anywhere within a 10-mile radius. And Lisa's been calling everywhere looking for it too.
Pharmacist Dani Lynch, who owns Thrift Pharmacy, said she would be lucky to find some, especially the generic version.
“We watch for it every day to see if it’s back in stock but so far it’s not,” said Lynch.
And that's not good. Health officials say the anti-virial is the only thing that will really help if you have the flu.
“They will reduce the symptoms and probably reduce the length of the virus,” said Phil Maytubby Director of Public Health, OKC-County Health Department.
If you can't get the drugs, Maytubby suggests asking your pharmacist to compound the medication.
Lisa was lucky, she was finally able to find the Tami-flu at a pharmacy in another town about 20 miles away.
Lynch do have the name brand version of Tami-flu at Thrifty pharmacy. But, she said a lot of insurance companies won't pay for the brand name version and it's very expensive.