What should I do if I can’t find formula for my baby?
Author: Stamford Health Staff
The nationwide formula shortage due to supply chain issues and a recall of several baby formula products (and subsequent shutdown of a baby formula plant) has parents concerned.
“Families have to go to multiple stores to find enough formula or switch to another type of formula,” said Dr. Manisha Juthani, Connecticut’s Department of Health commissioner, in a press release. “Some of the specialty formulas for medical conditions are scarce as well, and formula redemptions in Connecticut are down because the supply is very limited.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents buy no more than a 10-day to 2-week supply of formula to ease the impact of shortages. AAP encourages parents to check smaller stores or buy formula online from well-recognized distributors and pharmacies.
Here are a few resources that can help:
Human Milk Banking Association of North America: Certain HMBANA-accredited milk banks are distributing donated breast milk to mothers in need. Contact a HMBANA milk bank that is convenient for you and see if they can help.
Find My Formula CT Facebook group: This local group of over 4,000 members is helping parents locate formula and sharing availability. The AAP cautions against buying products from individuals or auction sites.
Connecticut WIC Program: The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children provides supplemental foods, health care referrals, and more to support low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and non-breastfeeding postpartum women, and to infants and children up to age 5 who are found to be at nutritional risk. Parents who meet this criteria can reach out to their local WIC office for formula availability, information, and support.
Contact formula companies directly: Reach out to manufacturers like Gerber and Abbott to inquire about availability in your area. Abbott has an urgent product request form pediatricians can fill out.
Stamford Health’s pediatricians warn parents NOT to make their own formula, water down formula, or substitute water for formula (which not only lacks nutritional value but may cause seizures if given in excess). Reach out to your pediatrician if you have questions about replacing one formula for another and to see if they know of any other local resources that can help.