Supply and demand hits flu shot clinics

January 10, 2013 7:51:02 PM PST
The CDC is reporting widespread flu activity in almost every state. That includes Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and as of today, it also includes Delaware.

Though the flu shot is one of the best prevention tools, you may be finding it difficult to get one.

Drug store health clinics like the CVS Minute Clinic in Bryn Mawr are busy, seeing up to 75 patients a day.

Some are sick with flu symptoms, others wanting a flu shot.

Pennsylvania Manager of Minute Clinic Cheryl Fattibene says over the past few days in some locations, supply of flu vaccine is tight.

"Many of our locations now, our Minute Clinics and pharmacies, are out of flu vaccines," Fattibene said.

And this morning at the Minute Clinic in Bryn Mawr, there was only one dose of the kids' vaccine.

But more vaccine comes in every day.

It's just difficult, though, to say how long it'll last.

"Today, we could be getting 30 doses in, and that could be sufficient, but that can be gone in 20 minutes depending how many people walk in the door," Fattibene said.

More than 128 million doses of vaccine were distributed to health departments, retail chains, and doctors' offices this year.

But while vaccine is out there, you may have to make a few calls to find it because some areas are reporting shortages of both the injectable and the FluMist nasal spray.

The Philadelphia Health department has shots available at its clinics.

To find a list those clinics, click here.

Suburban counties report good supplies of flu vaccine. Montgomery County has expanded the hours at its walk-in clinics in Norristown, Pottstown, and Willow Grove.

Montgomery County Health Department

Bucks County is giving vaccinations by appointment at its sites.

Bucks County Health Deparment (By appointment)

Chester County's health department also has vaccine for county residents.

Chester County Health Department

Camden County has scheduled 4 more public clinics. They will be held:

* Monday, January 14 - Bellmawr Regional Health Center, 35 Browning Road, Bellmawr 3:00 to 7:00 p.m.

* January 16 - Cherry Hill Municipal Building, 820 Mercer Street, Cherry Hill 9:00 a.m. till noon

* January 18 ? Gloucester Township Municipal Building, 1261 Chews Landing Rd., Blackwood 9:00 a.m. till noon

* January 28 - Bellmawr Regional Health Center, 35 Browning Road, Bellmawr 3:00 to 7:00 p.m.

On a final note, there have also been spot shortages of the children's version of Tamiflu nationwide.

CVS says they have been able to fill prescriptions by transferring it between pharmacies, but it this is something the FDA will monitor.

More info:

(They have expanded hours to their walk-in flu clinics)

Camden County Health Department (Has public clinics scheduled January 16th and 18th)