Texans find bare shelves in cold medicine aisle amid omicron surge

Over-the-counter cough and cold medicine aisles are nearly empty at Dallas Walmart, Target, CVS and Sam’s Club stores, The Dallas Morning News reported on January 10.

Five grades:

1. Reporters with the publication spot-checked eight of the outlets on January 10, finding sparsely stocked or empty shelves in the medicine aisle for products such as cough drops, Mucinex and NyQuil.

2. An employee of a Dallas SuperTarget told the Dallas Morning News the location receives cold remedy shipments, though inventory is quickly clearing the shelves.

3. The rise in the number of COVID-19 cases, coupled with more people getting colds or the flu this year, is likely driving the high demand for over-the-counter remedies.

“With three-quarters of a million people testing positive for omicron a day, many more people are buying cough and cold remedies and getting away with it,” Ed Fox, professor of marketing at the Edwin L. Cox School of Business from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, told the outlet.

4. Low stocks of over-the-counter drugs have also been reported in North Carolina The Charlotte Observer reports.

“We have seen significant demand for cough, cold and flu medications,” a Walmart spokesperson told the Observer. “We have been able to maintain fairly good stock levels, but we are working closely with our supplier to meet this demand and provide the product needed for our customers.”

5. The daily average of new COVID-19 cases was 761,112 on January 11, an increase of 185% from the previous two weeks, according to data from The New York Times shows.

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