Because of widespread shortages in essential cleaning supplies, Trivillian’s Pharmacy, in Kanawha City, is working overtime to fill at least one of those holes.
Chris Ritchie, Trivillian’s operations manager, said the pharmacy started making and selling its own hand sanitizer earlier this month after the West Virginia Board of Pharmacy published a formula for businesses to follow to help with the coronavirus response.
Trivillian’s is a compounding pharmacy, which means the store may make and sell essential medical products when they’re not available to the public.
“We’re kind of experts in being able to make very specific things, but they have to be things not available commercially,” Ritchie said.
However, production has stayed on and off for the past two weeks because of their own shortage of supplies, he said.
“The issues that we’re running into is just the raw supplies that goes into it and just trying to keep with all of our normal prescriptions and make the sanitizer,” Ritchie said.
The hardest ingredient to track down has been medical-grade alcohol, he said.
But some businesses have brought their own medical-grade alcohol to the store, and Trivillian’s has made and bottled the sanitizer for them, Ritchie said.
Ritchie strongly encouraged health care workers on the front lines at nursing homes, hospitals and health clinics who are low on sanitizer to reach out to Trivillian’s to get more produced as soon as possible.
For the public, Ritchie said the pharmacy has been selling 2-, 4- and 8-ounce bottles; while the price varies, Trivillain’s is trying to keep 4-ounce bottles at $5 and 8-ounce bottles at $9. For businesses, the store has been offering bottles up to 16 ounces.
Some days, Trivillian’s cranks out about 100 total bottles, Ritchie said. But there are days when there are zero raw materials on hand, and no bottles are sold.
However long the COVID-19 pandemic lasts, Ritchie said, Trivillian’s will try to help out as much as it’s asked to.
“It’s something we as a pharmacy can do to help the community; it’s something we’re able to do,” he said. “We’re going to try to keep making it as long as it’s needed and as long as we can find the supplies.”
Trivillian’s also has signed up with Charleston2Go, a food delivery and takeout service for local restaurants. Ritchie said the store is already known for its hamburgers, hot dogs, fresh-cut fries and milkshakes, which are now available through the service.