Waterloo Region hospitals say they still have steady supply of epidural catheters | Canadian

The federal government announced last week that there is an epidural catheter shortage in Canada but hospitals in Waterloo Region and Guelph say they have not felt the impacts just yet.

The device is mostly used in childbirth, although it can also be administered during surgeries in the lower extremities as well.

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Last week, hospitals in Wellington and Waterloo Region said they have been working together to conserve supply and ensure they still have stock.

“There haven’t been any changes; the message on our website is the most up-to-date information at this point,” Trish Blancher, program director of the Children’s and Childbirth Program at Grand River Hospital, stated.

“We want to reiterate to the community that at this time, hospitals have epidural catheter supply in stock and Waterloo Wellington patients have not been impacted.”

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Click to play video: 'Alberta Health Services taking action over shortage of epidural catheters'

Alberta Health Services taking action over shortage of epidural catheters

Alberta Health Services taking action over shortage of epidural catheters – Jul 15, 2022

Cambridge Memorial Hospital posted a video message on Twitter account Tuesday morning from Dr. Kristin Wadsworth, the chief of obstetrics/gynecology, in which she discussed other options that can be used.

“As of right now, we’ve been doing quite well in being able to collaborate with our partners in the region to make sure that patients can get epidurals if they want them in labour,” Wadsworth said.

“So one of the things that we have here in Cambridge is nitrous oxide or laughing gas, which patients can use during labour to help them feel a little bit more numb and make the contractions less strong.”

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She also said hospitals can also give patients morphine or fentanyl to help with the pain.

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“We also have a great nursing team here and people can, of course, bring in our support people to help them because that can really make a big difference,” Wadsworth offered.

She said that if moms-to-be have any questions or concerns, they should have a chat with their physician or midwife about what is going on at the hospital.

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