NEPTUNE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — An ambulance company serving the Jersey Shore says it’s running out of some emergency medicines.

“We’re trained to save peoples lives and we’re being handcuffed. The medication isn’t available to us,” said Bob Bauter, who has worked as an EMT for more than 20 years.

“We expect before the middle of this month to run out of the medication that could stop a seizure, which could be a life-threatening to a patient,” he added.

Employer MONOC Emergency Medical Services in New Jersey said it can’t get a hold of medication needed to treat seizures. They said they’ve called drug companies, wholesalers and hospitals, reports CBS 2’s Ann Mercogliano.

Scott Matin, vice-president of MONOC, said it’s not because of cost or for lack of trying.

“As we’re almost out of one drug, we’re using another drug to take its place, but pretty soon that drug will also be out,” he said.

On the Food and Drug Administration website, CBS 2 found 47 pages of information on drug shortages, including the drugs that MONOC said it is in desperate need of.

The reasons vary from manufacturing delays to increased demand.

“We do not have the legal authority to require companies to manufacture a drug that is in short supply. The agency can, however, work with manufacturers to quickly resolve, if possible, many of the issues that led to the shortage,” the FDA said.

“There is that possibility down the road that there simply won’t be a medicine to treat the patient that needs to be treated,” Matin said.

One of the drug companies that makes seizure medication told CBS 2 it is working hard to alleviate the shortage and that it has contacted the wholesaler through which MONOC buys its medicines.

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Comments (15)
  1. Joseph says:

    This is what you get when the FDA and the government stifle and over-regulate drug producing companies, they buckle under. No surprise here, other than blame the FDA

    1. Resa Garrett says:

      I am in Virginia and am a cancer patient. Went to have one of my very common meds refilled and the pharmacist was so happy she could order it I thought she was going to cry. She had to tell a whole bunch of people that day that she couldn’t get them there meds because they were all on back-order. So sad.

  2. wanda says:

    *MC hammers- democrats do value life,that is why they have programs in place to take care of the living and question giving birth to kids that will not or can not be taken care of, the ones who end up abused, murdered, or homeless and hungry, what kind of world is that to be born into, and now if they are bornsick there are no drugs to treat them. republicans claim to be all about life but they are not stepping up to take care of people and they seem to have no problem with the death penalty or sending soldiers off to war to be maimed or killed. but I digress, the subject is not the life issue of politics, it is the life issue of needing drugs… it is greed, who knows, maybe they are making plenty of them and just selling them somewhere else…I once had to take 3 pills a week that cost $120 each…you cannot tell me there is not greed involved.

  3. b_rox says:

    now you can’t even get sick in nj

  4. Swell_swell says:

    If you are going to blame any one, blame the greedy pharmaceutical companies who value the almighty dollar over producing clean, safe drugs. The FDA has had to shut down a number of manufacturing plants because of contamination from overhead water pipes leaking into the drug manufacturing lines, mold on walls, rodent infestations, and other health hazards. Frankly, some of the drugs that were being manufactured here in the US were probably less safe than what was being imported because our Big Pharma didn’t want to maintain its facilities properly. And now we’re paying the price!

  5. Bob Rosa says:

    What is disturbing me the most is that emergency responders are not being given what they need to treat patients. Emergency medical personnel in the trenches are not given what need to treat the public. This has to change. I was an EMT in NYS for 6 years and this cannot continue.

  6. NJ EMT says:

    Seriously….Seriously…lets look at the validity of this report…first in the State of New Jersey, “EMT’s” don’t give medications. PLEASE cbs, report correctly. Its paramedics that give these meds…and secondly, look who your source is. Monoc. Ugh, anybody in this state running ems would think twice before believing anything Monoc has to say…but them who am I to talk.

    1. Bob Rosa says:

      I was going to say the same thing but changed my mind at the last minute. Thank You!

    2. cynthia says:

      If I read it right, the news station did some checking on the validity of the claim, “On the Food and Drug Administration website, CBS 2 found 47 pages of information on drug shortages, including the drugs that MONOC said it is in desperate need of”. There were other listed checks, too. Comprehension people.

  7. Gary S says:

    I feel the pharmaceutical companies are purposely letting supplies dwindle so they can hike up prices.
    Watch and see.

    1. Saint Ex says:

      Gary, You hit the nail square on the head!

    2. Bob Rosa says:

      I cannot agree more!

  8. Gordy says:

    It’s all over. I’m in Alabama and my father is having a hard time finding several meds and I lost a co-worker last week for lack of proper meds.This is getting scary-from pain meds to anti-seizure meds to anti-psychotic’s. Not good.

  9. MC hammers says:

    According to a pharmacist on a talk show this morning, the FDA has closed pretty much all of the off site drug manufacturing plants. Yup. Drugs are running out… This must be the death panel plan if obumbacare is ruled unconstitutional. Many people will go bye bye… We already know how much the democrats value life.

  10. stephanie otto says:

    nj is not the only state running out of this medication. the hudson valley area of ny is suffering the same problem. as a paramedic i may have to struggle with the life and death situation like these. i hope that day never comes

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