3 things to know about the US' potential flu vaccination shortage

In June, the CDC recommended against using AstraZeneca's nasal flu vaccine, FluMist, citing a lack of evidence regarding the vaccine's efficacy. FluMist's absence from the American market is causing some physicians to worry about a potential flu vaccine shortage.

Here are three things to know.

  1. Fu Mist vaccine accounted for 8 percent — 14 million units — of the country's vaccination stock, according to Shimona Thakrar, MD, pediatrician at Scott and White Memorial Hospital in Temple, Texas.

  2. While drug manufacturers are working quickly to prepare for flu season, FluMist's absence from the market may increase demand for the flu shot and lead to shortages.

  3. Dr. Thakrar recommends patients get a flu shot as early as possible to guarantee vaccination. The shot vaccine offers protection for about a year. Flu season usually runs October through May, peaking in December and January.

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