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Flu Vaccine (cont.)

Where to Go to Obtain the Flu Vaccine

Seasonal vaccines are usually available at most physician offices, urgent-care clinics, and in the past few years, from some pharmacies (usually associated with pharmacy chains and grocery stores). Availability for the new flu seasonal vaccine starts in the late summer or early fall and if demand is normal, supplies are available well into the spring of the following year. This is not the situation for pandemic flu. As seen with the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, vaccine was not readily available and was rationed out to specific distribution sites that were tasked to vaccinate the most susceptible individuals initially until vaccine production was adequate to allow broad distribution. It is possible such circumstances could reoccur. If you need or want a specific vaccine, it is best to call the clinic, doctor's office, pharmacy or other health-care professional to determine if the vaccine you want is available.

In fact, another influenza A H3N2v strain has been noted in 2012 to be transmitted from pigs to humans. Fortunately, it causes symptoms similar to the seasonal flu, but there is no current vaccine available (as of September 2013) against this strain. The CDC is closely monitoring this strain to see if it may develop into a strain that becomes easily transmitted from person to person.

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