The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department received its first shipment of the new H1N1 Influenza vaccine that is being distributed nation-wide. This shipment is all the live attenuated influenza vaccine, the intranasal sprayer (FluMist), and is a very small limited quantity (2,300 doses). This vaccine can only be administered to healthy individuals 2 years to 49 years of age. It can not be use to vaccinate women who are pregnant or children or adults with medical conditions.
Although the amount of vaccine received is small, the Department is not waiting until it has larger quantities of vaccine to begin getting it out into the community. This vaccine will be distributed over the next several days to local providers participating the 2009 H1N1 vaccine distribution program. The public is asked to be patient and not flood local providers with calls seeking to obtain the vaccine. It will take the rest of this month and likely part of November before there are sufficient supplies of the vaccine in the community for many of those in the five priority populations to obtain the vaccine.
The five priority populations are:
The new H1N1 influenza virus is continuing to cause mild illness in most individuals. Although getting a flu shot is the primary way to prevent getting the flu, until sufficient quantities of the new vaccine are available, it is important that individuals follow behavioral practices that can reduce their risk of getting and spreading the flu virus. These include: