We want to provide some clarification on how the H1N1 vaccine is being distributed amongst priority groups across the state.
When the CDC originally outlined these groups, they also recommended that if the vaccine was initially only available in limited qualities that these groups would need to be sub-prioritized. Unfortunately, due to an unprecedented flu season involving the need to produce 2 different types of vaccines, there have been interruptions in the production and distribution of the H1N1 vaccine and we have only received a small percentage of our total allocation from the federal government.
Based on the CDC recommendations, this limited supply is reserved for people at especially high risk for flu, which includes pregnant women, children, caregivers of infants and healthcare workers with direct patient contact. As supplies grow, this will expand to include the additional priority groups of young adults up to the age of 24, and people between the ages of 25 and 64 with underlying health conditions like asthma and diabetes.
We expect the number of doses of H1N1 vaccine in the state to exceed 1 million by the end of November. As it arrives, we will continue to work to ensure that the vaccine that is available goes to these high priority groups. We thank you for your patience and understanding.