H1N1 Vaccine Availability Update: October 19th

Now that we are all convinced of the need, and the safety of the 2009 H1N1 vaccine however distribution, availability and demand is proving to be unpredictable. Suppliers of the vaccine are having trouble producing the vaccine as quickly as demanded. Vaccine manufacturers state that growing the vaccine is a time consuming process and they are committed to not cutting any corners in production to ensure potency and safety. We are encouraged to be patient and wait our turn according to our risk factors.

According to the CDC the first targeted group to receive the 2009 H1N1 vaccine has not yet been covered. This target group includes pregnant women, people who live with or care for children younger than 6 months of age (because they are too young to receive the vaccine), healthcare and emergency medical services personnel, persons between the ages of 6 months and 24 years old, and people ages 25 through 64 years of age who are at higher risk for 2009 H1N1 because of chronic health disorders or compromised immune systems.

According to Dr. Anne Schuchat, CDC’s director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases they will not make the original estimates for vaccine delivery for the end of the month. The CDC had predicted 40 million doses of 2009 H1N1 vaccine would be available by the end of October. In reality the actual availability will be 10 — 12 million doses less. Providers anticipate they will have more availability for the vaccine by mid November.

The distribution process for the 2009 H1N1 vaccine is based on the current process for shipping vaccine to approved providers. To qualify as a vaccine provider in a community a provider must demonstrate the capability to receive, store and administer vaccines appropriately. Hospitals, physicians and clinics order the 2009 H1N1 vaccine through their state’s health department. Each state health department creates a project area and vaccines are allocated to each project area in proportion to its population. The current status is that each project area is receiving only a fraction of what they need. As of October 14th, the CDC states 11.4 million doses of flu vaccine were available to be ordered and 8 million doses had been ordered by state health departments and almost 6 million doses have been shipped to all 50 states.

Below are the numbers by state on the current vaccine shipment to project areas.

Vaccine Shipment Status
by Project Area
Posted October 16, 2009, 12:00 PM ET

Provided by: Flu.gov

Project Areas Total Doses Shipped
as of 10/14/09
Alabama 102600
Alaska 25200
American Samoa 0
Arizona 180200
Arkansas 60100
California 836900
Chicago 71400
Colorado 88400
Connecticut 79900
Delaware 15700
District of Columbia 14500
Federal Worker Program* 13000
Florida 242700
Georgia 204700
Guam 2400
Hawaii 32600
Idaho 45600
Illinois 114000
Indiana 240800
Iowa 54000
Kansas 27400
Kentucky 73600
Louisiana 79400
Maine 33300
Marshall Islands 0
Maryland 130700
Massachusetts 189600
Michigan 151200
Micronesia 1700
Minnesota 48900
Mississippi 10000
Missouri 70500
Montana 17800
Nebraska 45500
Nevada 71600
New Hampshire 25600
New Jersey 158000
New Mexico 40000
New York 204800
New York City 151000
North Carolina 190100
North Dakota 13900
Northern Mariana Islands 2400
Ohio 203500
Oklahoma 65200
Oregon 59800
Pennsylvania 218100
Philadelphia 37500
Puerto Rico 42900
Republic of Palau 1300
Rhode Island 15800
South Carolina 74600
South Dakota 17300
Tennessee 160400
Texas 178300
Utah 64500
Vermont 14800
Virgin Islands 3000
Virginia 265100
Washington 75600
West Virginia 46500
Wisconsin 168600
Wyoming 11400
*For more information, please visit: http://www.opm.gov/pandemic/memos/H1N1_20090930.asp

One comment

  1. On the worry about sfeaty of the origin of vaccines, the FDA maintains strict oversight of both the processes for production as well as the quality of the product for all vaccines destined for US use. They inspect the production line and the end product and have requirements for manufacturer surveillance on quality. While we may question some aspects of FDA oversight this system appears to work. In the past few years I can think of a few occasions vaccine production lots were pulled prior to distribution because of process quality concerns. I have never heard of a contaminant affecting our vaccines. Besides, I think Flu vaccine is manufactured in France or Switzerland.

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