05/25/2022 - Academy Member Ginger Carney, MPH, RDN, LDN, IBCLC, RLC, FILCA, FAND, represented the profession during today's hearing on the current infant formula shortage held by the U.S. House Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and related Agencies Subcommittee.
In her testimony, Ginger provided a snapshot of what life has looked like in her clinic since the February 2022 infant formula recall in her role as director of Clinical Nutrition and Lactation Services for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. She shared a story of two children that were admitted to the local pediatric hospital with dehydration caused by intolerance to a formula that had been substituted for their regular specialized formula because of unavailability. As Ginger testified: "Parents and caregivers are at their wits' end and feel that they must find something to feed them – when an infant is hungry or child is dependent on a specialized feeding, it can be life-threatening when needed formulas are not available."
Ginger also shared the struggles of fellow Academy members from across the country, working around the clock to ensure nutrition security. Using the submissions received in the request the Academy made earlier this month for members to help illustrate the impact shortages continue to have in communities, Ginger provided a voice on Capitol Hill of Registered Dietitian Nutritionists on the frontlines, going above and beyond, from constantly looking for alternative formulas when their original option is no longer available to driving around to local stores and sending pictures to families of what formulas were available.