Oct 21, 2016 General Comments Off on Self-paid flu vaccines in short supply in Taiwan
Taiwan is facing a serious shortage of flu vaccines for people who do not qualify for free vaccinations, with some people in central and southern Taiwan told that they may have to wait until December to get shots.
The shortage, however, does not affect the supply of publicly-funded flu vaccines for those who are most at-risk, including elderly people.
Due to the flu outbreak at the end of last year, the Centers for Disease Control this year allowed more people to be eligible for publicly-funded vaccines, and the doses it is offering under the program also has been increased to 6 million from the original 3 million.
Since the start of the government-funded vaccination program on Oct. 1, some 2.52 million shots have been used, 1 million doses more than last year.
Chuang Jen-hsiang(???), deputy director general of the Centers for Disease Control, said that if the public are in a hurry to get shots, a lot of major hospitals such as National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei Medical University Hospital, and Taipei Veterans General Hospital still have a large supply.
If they cannot find vaccines, they should not panic, as a batch of 60,000 doses has arrived on Friday and another batch of 15,000 doses will arrive at the end of the month, Chuang said.
The CDC's statistics between July 2015 and May 2016 showed that there were 346 cases of people aged 25-49 who developed serious complications after getting the flu, and nearly 30 cases later died. Among the fatalities, up to 90 percent had not had vaccinations.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel
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