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Specialty Infant Formula Shortage

Information updated October 28, 2022

Information for Parents

For several months, Canada has experienced a shortage of specialty formulas for infants with food allergies and certain medical conditions. These specialty infant formulas include specifically extensively hydrolyzed infant formulas and amino acid-based formulas. Although the situation is not completely back to normal, there is a limited but stable supply.

Regular infant formula continued to be available on shelves during the shortage. While individual products may sometimes be out of stock, alternate formats or comparable products from other brands are usually available. Your baby’s health care provider can help identify alternate infant formula if necessary, and can provide strategies to help your baby adjust to a new product.

Concerned parents should discuss with a health care professional such as a family physician, pediatrician, nurse practitioner, or dietitian to determine appropriate feeding options for their infant, especially if they have allergies or special formula needs.

Pediatric dietitians can work with affected families to provide safe and appropriate nutrition options and support them during this time. Hospitals in Saskatchewan have access to dietitian expertise and contact information to help navigate feeding challenges and formula selection.

More information is available at:
Information for families on the limited supply of infant formula - Canada.ca

The Therapeutic Nutritional Products Program (TNPP) available through Saskatchewan Aids to Independent Living (SAIL) provides assistance towards the cost of specialized nutritional products for people with complex medical conditions who rely on those products as their primary nutritional source. Program benefits are cost shared between clients and the Ministry of Health. The program is aware of the limited supply and has been reassessing clients’ coverage when requested based on the cost of alternative products.

The Saskatchewan Ministry of Health and Saskatchewan Health Authority continue to be in contact with Health Canada and will continue to monitor supply levels of specialty formula.

People are asked not to buy more specialty infant formula than they need so that all infants with food allergies and certain medical conditions can access the formula they need.

Information for Pharmacists & Health Professionals

Certain specialty infant formulas will soon be returning to shelves at pharmacies and retailers, at the discretion of manufacturers. While this is optimistic news, diligence via supply management is encouraged as the shortage is not fully resolved.

Note that the information for families published by Health Canada, as well as the infant formula webpage maintained by the Canadian Pharmacists Association, were also updated.

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