The healthcare industry is taking a hard hit with the growing number of COVID-19 patients being cared for in a hospital setting. Hospital budgets are being changed due to different needs and drug therapies for Coronavirus patients.

Sky rocketing demand for increased medical staff, PPE, ventilators, and IV drugs for patients on ventilators are all impacting hospital budgets. Unfortunately with a shortage of face masks, prices have risen for those as well. Companies have been air freighting masks to have them readily available to those who need them, which also adds to the increased cost. Waiting for masks at a lower cost could take months, and the demand is so high that waiting is not an option.

More patients on ventilators means the pharmacy budget is being directed to IV medications for anesthesia, muscle relaxers, sedation and pain management. Oral medications are commonly not an option when a patient is ventilated. Drug shortages are effecting fill rates and prices of medications. This is worrisome for healthcare workers caring for ventilated patients who have no control over the drug shortages. Elective surgeries have been postponed in most hospitals to save beds for Coronavirus patients, as well as to decrease exposure to other individuals. In turn, some drugs used to care for individuals in an inpatient setting (not being treated for COVID-19) are not being ordered as frequently by hospital pharmacies.

The healthcare industry is undergoing a major change in 2020, which hopefully sets the tone for how budgets are handled in the future.

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