2 children hospitalised amid US baby formula shortage
The children have specific dietary requirements due to a bowel syndrome.
Two young children in the US have had to receive hospital care as a result of the baby formula shortage in the US.
Dr Mark Corkins, the division chief pediatric gastroenterology at the University of of Tennessee Health Science Centre said that the children, who have special dietary needs, required IV treatment.
In a statement, Dr Corkins said: "These are young children who have health conditions and special medical needs that have specific dietary requirements.
"Their bodies did not adapt well to the new formula type and they required treatment via IV fluids and supplemental nutrition."
He explained that doctors at the hospital had to adapt the children' diets to ensure that they were meeting their nutritional needs. The children need a particular type of amino-acid formula as they have short bowel syndrome. One is five-years old, and the other is eight.
One child has since been discharged from hospital, while the other is still receiving treatment there.
The past few weeks have seen many parents in the US struggle to feed their young children due to a shortage in baby formula. According to Datasembly, 43% of baby formula was out of stock at the start of May.
One cause of the shortage is the closure of a baby formula manufacturing facility in Michigan following a product recall. The recall was issued after four babies consuming the formula manufactured there developed bacterial infections. Two of them subsequently died, but Abbott Laboratories, who issued the closure, have since said that there is no link between the infections and the formula.
Additionally, Covid-related supply chain problems had previously been affecting the availability of baby formula in the US.
It's understood that the shortages is disproportionately affecting poorer families in the US.
This week, Abbott Laboratories announced that it reached a deal with the Food and Drug Administration to reopen the factory in Michigan. Production will resume shortly, which could allow the shortage to be eased in six to eight weeks.