Cambridge Flu Clinics Postponed due to Vaccine Shipping Delays
The Cambridge Public Health Department announced that its remaining flu clinics have been postponed due to national shipping delays of injectable seasonal flu vaccine. Since Oct. 8, the department has vaccinated about 2,500 people at flu clinics held at senior apartment complexes, the North Cambridge Senior Center, the Cambridge Hospital and the Tobin School.
“This is a situation in which demand has outstripped supply,” said Claude-Alix Jacob, the city’s Chief Public Health Officer and director of the Cambridge Public Health Department. “In the past 10 days, our department has given nearly the same number of flu vaccinations as we would in an entire flu season.”
The department expects to receive additional doses of injectable seasonal flu vaccine in November. Once the vaccine arrives, the department will release a revised flu clinic schedule. The target groups for the vaccine will be Cambridge seniors (age 65 or older), as well as Cambridge residents and workers with chronic health conditions that place them at risk for serious complications from the flu.
Since flu season in Massachusetts typically runs from December through March, residents and employees who receive their flu shot later this fall will be well protected against the seasonal flu virus.
Meanwhile, the department has a supply of FluMist, the nasal spray flu vaccine, which will be available to children in Cambridge public and independent schools through the department’s school health program.
Finally, the state alerted local health departments on Oct. 16 that municipal H1N1 vaccine clinics should be postponed due to production delays of the H1N1 vaccine. Once the Cambridge Public Health Department receives its shipment of the H1N1 vaccine, special clinics will be organized that target pregnant women, children and people with chronic health conditions.
For the most current updates, call the health department’s recorded FluLine is 617-665-3855 or go to www.cambridgepublichealth.org .