Their goal is to provide Saskatchewan residents with easy access to the popular kids’ medication through a new online ordering platform by KemNet.
“Many of the phone calls that come into our pharmacy are from parents who have run out of acetaminophen (Tylenol) or have heard about the shortage,” says Stephanie Yeboah, the manager at Nanogram Pharmacy.
“We get a call about probably about every five to ten minutes.”
The shortage comes at a particularly challenging time of year.
“Parents are really concerned now that school has started again. Doctors are asking questions too, as are pharmacies.”
The specialty compounding pharmacy provides drug compounding services for fertility, hormone, skin, pain medications and animals. Nanogram says it can now fill doctors’ prescriptions for children’s Tylenol and Advil that are being placed on KemNet’s system.
Drug compounding is the process where a pharmacist combines, mixes or alters ingredients to create a customized drug for an individual user.
“We’ve been seeing more cough, cold and respiratory issues over the summer and that’s unusual,” says Yeboah. “Now, with kids back to school, we’re entering the cold and flu season so we’ll see demand picking up even more.”
KemNet, the pharmacy software platform, started in Alberta in August. Founder and CEO Morenike Oladsebikan says its facility in Edmonton began stockpiling ingredients needed to supply these meds after learning about the shortage.
“Once we learned of the acute need for these children’s medications, we responded immediately,” says Oladsebikan, who’s been a clinical pharmacist for a decade.
The release says while children’s Tylenol and Advil are normally available without prescription, these compounded versions require one.
“Once a customer completes a brief online information form, pharmacies can typically deliver the medication they need within 24 hours,” says Oladsebikan.
Nanogram is the first Saskatchewan pharmacy to sign on to the service.
“We get the acetaminophen, Tylenol powder, or the ibuprofen, Advil power, and we would make the suspension from scratch,” says Yeboah.
“We literally would have the surf basis and the flavours and that, and we’d literally create a product that is extremely similar.”
She says this partnership gives people somewhere to reach out, either through her pharmacy or on KemNet’s website.
“This gives them an easy option if they can’t find the product they’re looking for,” says Yeboah. “They can get in touch with us and we can help them source it or we can compound it if necessary.”
Yeboah adds this service doesn’t just apply to Saskatoon.
“You’re going to be waiting that two or three days to get the medication to your location depending on where you live, but Saskatoon we can definitely have it done the same day.”
She wants parents to know that the shortage won’t last forever, but in the meantime, there is an alternative.
“When it does come back in stock, we can’t compound it anymore. So when it comes back in stock, parents will just purchase it off the shelf like they did before.” concludes Yeboah.