Norwegian hospitals are facing a shortage of morphine, reports state broadcaster NRK, and that worries those trying to alleviate pain for cancer patients. Health Minister Bent Høie of the Conservative Party promised that he would ensure enough supplies to prevent shelves from going empty.
Høie said he was taking reports of the shortage seriously. Some local hospitals like Førde Sykehus in the mountains of central Norway are already running so low that they fear they won’t be able to offer the pain relief to patients.
The local shortage is part of a worldwide shortage that began last fall, and is blamed on mergers between pharmaceutical firms and disruptive relocation of production facilities.