IRVING, Texas (BUSINESS WIRE), April 16, 2020 - Vizient Inc. applauds the decision announced today by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to allow hospital pharmacies to begin compounding a range of pharmaceuticals used for COVID-19 patients, including many medications necessary for those on ventilators. The medications include forms of fentanyl, midazolam, cisatracurium and ketamine that have seen unprecedented levels of demand and declining fill rates as the number of coronavirus patients has increased.

Vizient began sounding the alarm more than two weeks ago about sedatives as well as two other classes of medications, analgesics and paralytics that are required for ventilated patients. At that time, the company’s pharmacy experts offered recommendations to the FDA to help expand access for providers. Those recommendations included giving 503B compounders the ability to produce other essential medications for critically ill patients, particularly those on ventilators, regardless of whether they were identified by the FDA as being currently short in the market.

“The Vizient pharmacy team is monitoring the drugs required for ventilator patients daily and the heightened demand is not waning, but staying steady. In fact when comparing the run rate in April to March, the demand is even higher and fill rates have fallen from 72% overall for the month of March to 53% so far in April. This unprecedented demand for these drug classes appears to be consistent with the overall need for ventilators in this country as supply is simply not able to meet the current level of demand. We can’t lose sight that ventilators, and the medications necessary for those patients, is a 1-to-1 equation,” said Dan Kistner, PharmD, group senior vice president, pharmacy solutions for Vizient.

Kistner added, “We are pleased to see the FDA and the Drug Enforcement Administration collaborating with hospitals and industry stakeholders to quickly implement strategies that better match immediate and future demands as COVID-19 continues to spread across the United States. We’re appreciative of their responsiveness and willingness to address challenges that can impact patient care.”

Vizient is the nation’s largest member-driven health care performance improvement company, providing innovative supply chain capabilities, data-driven solutions and expertise that lead to improved patient outcomes and lower costs.

About Vizient, Inc.

Vizient, Inc. provides solutions and services that improve the delivery of high-value care by aligning cost, quality and market performance for more than 50% of the nation’s acute care providers, which includes 95% of the nation’s academic medical centers, and more than 20% of ambulatory providers. Vizient provides expertise, analytics and advisory services, as well as a contract portfolio that represents more than $100 billion in annual purchasing volume, to improve patient outcomes and lower costs. Vizient has earned a World’s Most Ethical Company designation from the Ethisphere Institute every year since its inception. Headquartered in Irving, Texas, Vizient has offices throughout the United States. Learn more at www.vizientinc.com.


Angie Boliver
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