The director of the county's EMS said some medicines are tripling in cost.
The Volusia County Council approved medical supply agreements with multiple vendors at its meeting on July 10, and the annual expenditures will cost the County about $1,035,000 — a result of rising costs for medicines and shortage of supplies, said Emergency Medical Services Director John Zaragoza.
“We have seen some significant increases of individual items including medications that are now in short supply," Zaragoza said at the meeting. "Some of them are actually tripling in cost.”
Though the agenda item concerned the EMS annual medical supply agreement, it was brought before the County Council due to its million dollar cost. Aside from the costs of the actual supplies, Zaragoza attributed the high expenditure to an increase in service utilization, call volume and a rise in critical cases.
The contracts recommended for approval involved five companies: Concordance Healthcare Solutions LLC, from Tiffin, Ohio; Bound Tree Medical LLC, from Dublin, Ohio; Henry Schein Inc. from Imdo, South Carolina; QuadMed from Jacksonville; Medical Technology Group from Miami and POSS LLC from Tallahassee.
He outlined the need for multiple vendors to take advantage of various prices. Also, due to the shortage of medicinal supplies, being on more vendors' lists gives EMS the opportunity to grab those needed supplies as they become available, he said.