Janesville59°

Walworth County vaccine supplies dwindle, providers await shipments

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Dan Plutchak
October 24, 2009
— If you live in Walworth County, you might have to go elsewhere to get either the seasonal or swine flu vaccine.

A few Walworth County providers have a limited supply of vaccine for select patients with appointments, but for the general public, it’s either wait or look to neighboring counties.


The Rock County Health Department, however, still plans to hold H1N1 vaccination clinics next week at Clinton High School and Turner School District’s Powers Elementary School. The county has temporarily suspended seasonal flu clinics while staff waits for a shipment of vaccines, Health Officer Karen Cain said.


Rock County does have some seasonal flu vaccine set aside to take to the senior fair at Janesville’s Marshall Middle School on Friday, Cain said.


All Walworth County walk-in flu clinics contacted by WalworthCountyToday .com have been canceled while providers wait for more shipments.


Delays in shipments from vaccine manufacturers have forced the Aurora Visiting Nurse Association of Wisconsin to suspend its seasonal flu vaccination clinics throughout southeastern Wisconsin.


According the VNA Web site, clinics will resume as soon as additional vaccine arrives.


Shipments of seasonal flu vaccine were disrupted as vaccine suppliers switched production to the swine flu vaccine.


The Walworth County Public Health Department also has put their clinics on hold, according to Public Health Officer Pat Grove.


Walworth County health officials are planning vaccine clinics in six communities for targeted populations but won’t release the details until vaccine arrives, Grove said.


On its Web site, Dean Health System says it has a limited supply of seasonal flu vaccine available until additional shipments arrive.


Seasonal flu shot clinics are being put on temporary hold, but Dean patients who have scheduled appointments may receive the vaccine based on the supply at the time of visit.


Calls to Delavan Walgreen’s, ShopKo and Walmart pharmacies, as well as Lake Geneva’s Target, found that all are out of vaccine and are waiting for shipments. The companies’ Web sites indicate all county clinics have been suspended.


Cain said people who want seasonal flu shots shouldn’t be worried about the delay.


“November and December are perfectly good times to get flu shots,” Cain said.


“The only reason we started early this year is so we could get started with H1N1 vaccinations.”


Cain said Rock County has so far given about 3,000 doses of the seasonal flu vaccine. The county ordered about 5,000 doses, she said, but is waiting on the second shipment.


The county typically gives between 3,000 and 4,000 seasonal flu vaccines a year, Cain said.


—Gazette reporter Ann Marie Ames contributed to this report



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