Vaccine Shortages

Sometimes the amount of a certain vaccine can not for the number of people who need it. Vaccine shortages can affect certain areas of the country or across the country. A shortage may last a few days or several months.

Earlier in the USA. States. has been no shortage of flu vaccines, the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV), tetanus vaccines (including the DTaP vaccines given to children as part of their regular immunizations) and others.

What causes a shortage of vaccine?

The vaccine shortage can occur for many reasons. Some factors include:

  • The company that manufactures the vaccine is not able to produce the vaccine fast enough.
  • The company decides to stop making the vaccine for business reasons.
  • The provider of the vaccine can not send out the vaccine quickly enough.

Often, a combination of these factors cause a shortage of the vaccine in one or more areas of the country.

What happens during a vaccine shortage?

Your family doctor will receive information about the shortage, how long it will last and what to do until new supplies arrive.Typically, the supply of the vaccine is not completely wiped out there are just fewer doses than usual. During this time, doctors give vaccines first to the people most in need. This list may include the elderly, very young children, people with certain medical problems and those who plan to travel to other countries. Others were put on a waiting list and call the doctor's office when the vaccine is available.

How I can get more information?

If you have questions about vaccine shortages, talk with your family doctor. The doctor can give information about the ways a shortage might affect you, your family and your community.

The website of the U.S. National Immunization Program of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention contain information about the current shortage of vaccines in the U.S.. States. This website is reviewed and updated every week.

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