If you listen to national media, you would think that there is a real shortage of the flu vaccine and the H1N1 vaccine. However, according to the Wilson County Health Department, they get regular shipments of the H1N1 vaccine.
“There is no shortage, but there is a delay in shipment from the manufacturers,” said Carla Valdez, supervisor of the Wilson County Health Department, in an interview Thursday. “We have a clinic tonight and we should know when we will have the next clinic by the first of next week.”
People are asked to call in for appointments, but there are no appointments available for adults. Appointments are only for children 6-35 months old.
“We order our seasonal vaccines a year ahead of time,” Valdez said. “There is no charge if you get the vaccine at the health department. Private distribution centers and pharmacists have a government-mandated price limit that they can charge for vaccines.”
The inactivated vaccine (vaccine that has killed virus in it) is injected into the muscle, like the annual flu shot. The nasal spray flu vaccine (sometimes called LAIV for Live Attenuated Influenza Vaccine) is a vaccine made with live, weakened viruses that cannot grow at normal body temperature and is given via a nasal sprayer.
The recommendations for who can get the 2009 H1N1 nasal spray vaccine are the same as for seasonal nasal spray vaccine. LAIV is recommended for use in healthy people 2 years to 49 years of age who are not pregnant.
The Wilson County Health Department is located at 927 E. Baddour Parkway in Lebanon. For appointments or more information, call 444-5325.