Inside these posts: Anesthetic

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Hospira drug supply issues may delay executions

A lethal injection room in a Texas prison. (AP photo)

The execution room in a Texas prison. (AP)

An anesthesia drug sold by Hospira Inc. that is used by several states to execute prisoners on death row may not be available until early next year due to supply issues.

The drug, sodium thiopental, is not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug administration for use in lethal injections, so it is not sold by Hospira for such uses. But like other prescriptions, physicians are known to provide drugsĀ  to patients in off-label form, and the product is known to be used as part of a cocktail of prescriptions used to put inmates to death.

USA Today reported last week that the shortage of several anesthesia drugs may delay executions in at least two states. Federal agencies and some hospitals have also reported that elective surgeries are also being delayed because of the shortage of such products. Get the full story »