Guidance for Contrast Media Shortage

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AFL 22-10 From the California Department of Public Health

May 16, 2022

TO: All Facilities

SUBJECT: Guidance for Contrast Media Shortage 

All Facilities Letter (AFL) Summary

  • This AFL provides notice of supply chain issues related to availability of radiologic contrast media for imaging studies affecting all health facilities in the United States. It is expected that this shortage will impact health facility operations until late June 2022.
  • This AFL provides helpful links to guidance developed for healthcare facilities on actions to consider in managing the current contrast media shortage.

Iohexol products (contrast media) may currently be unavailable or available in limited supply due to the shutdown of a production facility in Shanghai, China during a Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) lockdown. The facility is open, and production has resumed; however, the shortage is expected to continue until late June 2022. As a result of the iohexol shortage, the availability of other contrast agents may be affected as organizations seek other suitable alternatives.

Various nationally recognized organizations have developed guidance on strategies for conserving contrast media. The California Department of Public Health recommends facilities refer to the following guidance for actions to consider in managing the shortage:

Health facilities should contact their Medical and Health Operational Area Coordinator (MHOAC) and their Licensing and Certification District Office if their available supply of contrast media for critical use, where alternative agents/imaging cannot be used, falls below a two-week threshold. Refer to the MHOAC Program Contact Information (PDF) for a listing of coordinators.

If you have any questions about this AFL, please contact your local district office


Original signed by Cassie Dunham

Cassie Dunham
Deputy Director