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Storm preps should include COVID considerations according to health authorities

Stocks of over-the-counter remedies to ease symptoms at home are in short supply at some retailers

WASHINGTON — Residents preparing for a winter storm or any other potential disruption should add COVID to the list of considerations when stocking up for a storm, according to local, state and federal authorities.

Residents should think about how they might endure illness should they be stuck at home after a major storm, authorities say.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control, the top precaution is full vaccination because it dramatically decreases the chance of needing to be hospitalized or seek additional medical care outside the home, particularly during a severe weather event.

The CDC also recommends that individuals fill prescriptions in advance of predicted severe weather as well as stock up on items such as masks and hand sanitizer.

Local health authorities say families should also have over the counter cold and flu remedies on hand, to make enduring symptoms while stuck at home more comfortable.

However in retail pharmacies sampled by WUSA9 stores were frequently sold out, or had limited supplies, of such remedies.

Retailers blame pandemic related supply chain issues and high demand for the empty shelves.

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