Baby formula shortage leaves parents scrambling

Parents across the country are scrambling to find baby formula.

"It’s incomprehensible," says Valerie Zakovic, mother of a 3-month-old baby boy.

The shortage of infant formula has been caused in part by a major recall.

In February, certain Similac, Alimentum, and EleCare powder formulas were recalled due to contamination in a factory. That, coupled with supply chain issues, has made the situation even worse.

"You never think you have to worry about what you’re going to feed your child," said first-time mom, Marissa McElligott of Levittown.

Pediatrician Dr. John Zaso of East Meadow says parents have been calling him in tears not knowing what to feed their child. 

"This really needs to be treated as a medication shortage but not just a food shortage," Dr. Zaso said.

According to Dr. Zaso, the problem is worse for those whose children suffer from a milk allergy, saying they can only have a special formula.

"If you give them regular formula, they develop colitis, they have intestinal bleeding and it just gets worse," he said.

On social media, Facebook groups are full of desperate parents willing to trade formula, and even drive hours if needed.

Dr. Zaso says for two weeks he called 13 different pharmacies for patients and was told Simply they didn’t have the formula. 

"The feds need to step in and help with production and distribution," Dr. Zaso said.

Meanwhile, if you do find the formula that you need there’s another problem: some pharmacies are now limiting how many you can purchase. It’s unclear how long this shortage will last, but the doctor says just try to stock up if you can.