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The shortage of the ubiquitous intravenous bags of saline has been going on since 2014, but the supply got hit even further when the hurricane damaged the country’s biggest supplier in Puerto Rico last fall.

And as flu season starts to kick into high gear, hospitals and clinics worry the demand will get pushed over the edge.

“This is a serious situation and right now we are at the limits of our conservation and adaptation strategy,” said Dr. Paul Biddinger, director of the Center for Disaster Medicine and vice chairman for emergency preparedness at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

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NBC News

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