The Golden Thread

Bulletin Regrading Shortage of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine
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Author:  Siam [ Sun Oct 18, 2009 1:52 pm ]
Post subject:  Bulletin Regrading Shortage of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine

Bulletin Regrading Shortage of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine
Influenza Virus Vaccine

15 October 2009

Products Affected - Description

Fluarix, pre-filled syringes, GlaxoSmithKline

Fluzone, multi-dose vials and pre-filled syringes, Sanofi Pasteur

Fluvirin, multi-dose vials and pre-filled syringes, Novartis

FluMist, Intranasal spray, MedImmune

Reason for the Shortage

* In September 2009, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) revised production estimates of Fluarix from 8 million doses to 6.5 million due to variability in influenza manufacturing.1,2
* GSK’s production of 12 million doses of FluLaval was not affected.1,2
* In late September 2009, 500,000 doses of Fluarix did not pass GSK internal inspection bringing the total production of Fluarix to 6 million doses.1,2
* Most doses of Fluarix were allocated to hospitals and health-systems and many customers have had orders cancelled. Supplies of FluLaval were not allocated or made available to customers whose Fluarix orders were cancelled.1,2
* Sanofi Pasteur has not cancelled any orders for influenza vaccine, however some shipments are delayed.3
* Novartis has revised production estimates of Fluvirin from 30 million doses to 27 million doses.4
* MedImmune has not cancelled any orders for influenza vaccine, however some shipments are delayed.5

Estimated Resupply Dates

* GSK has distributed 17.5 million doses and expects to distribute the last 500,000 doses by mid-October, 2009.1,2
* Sanofi Pasteur is shipping Fluzone as product becomes available.3
* Novartis will complete all shipments of Fluvirin by mid-October, 2009.4
* MedImmune is shipping FluMist as product becomes available.5

Alternative Agents & Management

* Influenza vaccine is ordered in advance each year and typically most supplies are allocated in advance to customers.
* No supplier is able to meet the increased demand for vaccine created by cancelled orders.
* Additional doses of influenza vaccine are unlikely to be available in sufficient amounts for customers who have had a substantial number of doses cancelled by GSK. Hospitals and other customers who ordered Fluarix are disproportionately affected by the cancellation of 25% of all Fluarix doses. The National Influenza Vaccine Summit posts vaccine availability. Small amounts of vaccine may be available for purchase.
* The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state the total production of influenza vaccine is approximately 97% of earlier estimates.6
* The CDC has published guidelines for prioritizing influenza vaccine during a shortage.7 These guidelines recommend prioritizing influenza virus vaccine for the following groups of patients who are at higher risk of complications due to influenza. There are no specific priorities within each tier.
o Tier 1
+ Persons aged 65 years or older
+ Children 6 to 23 months of age
+ Residents of long-term care facilities and nursing homes
+ Persons 2 to 64 years of age with chronic medical conditions (eg, cardiovascular or pulmonary disorders, diabetes or metabolic diseases, sickle cell anemia, kidney diseases, or weakened immune systems including HIV/AIDS)
+ Health care personnel
+ Household contacts and out-of-home caregivers of children less than 6 months of age
+ Women who will be pregnant during the flu season
o Tier 2
+ Adults aged 50 years or older
+ Household contacts or caregivers of persons with increased risk of developing influenza-related complications such as children less than 2 years of age, anyone over the age of 65 years, anyone with chronic medical conditions or weakened immune systems.
o Tier 3
+ Any person age 2 to 49 years without high-risk conditions. ... spx?id=571

Siam:Edited to fix link

Author:  Bluebonnet [ Sun Oct 18, 2009 2:17 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bulletin Regrading Shortage of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine

Tier 3
+ Any person age 2 to 49 years without high-risk conditions

:awe That is a big change. Now the highest risk population for a pandemic influenza have been moved to the last tier? :shock:

Author:  Siam [ Sun Oct 18, 2009 3:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bulletin Regrading Shortage of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine

:flame Note how they placed it at the very end as well!! Probably hoping no one would notice.

Author:  Bluebonnet [ Tue Oct 20, 2009 10:49 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Bulletin Regrading Shortage of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine

Fairfax cancels two swine flu vaccine distributions

By Derek Kravitz
Tuesday, October 20, 2009 1:01 PM

Fairfax County has canceled two mass swine flu vaccine distributions after the Washington region's most populous locality was told it would receive only a fraction of the vaccine doses it had expected.

Officials had originally planned on administering 50,000 H1N1 flu vaccine shots to schoolchildren next weekend at 10 public middle schools. Instead, a smaller, targeted distribution for infants and pregnant women has been scheduled for 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Fairfax County Government Center. Children ages 6 months to 36 months and pregnant women are eligible.

Health officials had been expecting about 120,000 vaccine shots by the end of the month but now anticipate only about 10,000 vaccine doses will be delivered. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced last week that the flu vaccine shots were taking longer to produce and that only 28 million to 30 million doses, instead of the planned 40 million doses, would be delivered to local and regional health departments by the end of October.

"Certainly the ideal would have been to have enough vaccine to be available for everyone," said Gloria Addo-Ayensu, Fairfax County's health director. "We won't have as many as anticipated but we do know who our highest target priority groups are and that's who we are focusing on. Certainly not everyone who should come down with H1N1 will be severely ill." :huh

Vaccine is still being produced and is expected to be available in the coming weeks, Addo-Ayensu said.

But the vaccine shortage comes at a time when the spread of the H1N1 flu virus to children and teenagers has been especially acute. Earlier this month, health officials announced that 19 children nationwide had died from flu strain in a single week. Most of those children had health problems that made them vulnerable but roughly 20 to 30 percent of those who have died from the virus this flu season were otherwise healthy, officials said. As of Oct. 14, about 265,000 H1N flu vaccine doses have been shipped to Virginia.

Depending on the quantities of vaccine available each week, doses might still be made available to potentially vulnerable groups at Fairfax health department offices. Officials have promised to keep residents aware of vaccine availability through the county's flu Web site and on its Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Fred Ellis, director of the Office of Safety and Security for the Fairfax County public schools, urged parents to be patient and said teachers at county schools have been instructing children to wash their hands and cover their nose and mouth when sneezing or coughing.

Consent forms and vaccine information is available on Fairfax County's Web site.

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