WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Healthy people who want to get flu shots
will just have to wait for them, the nation's top doctor said
They said a delay in getting enough influenza vaccine doses
manufactured this year meant a large supply would not be
available until late November or early December.
"So we are urging, through the month of November, that health
care providers focus first on immunizing the elderly and the
chronically ill -- those groups who are most at risk,"
Surgeon-General Dr. David Satcher told a news conference.
High-risk groups include anyone older than 65, anyone who has
immune suppression because of cancer treatment, HIV infection
or some other cause, anyone who will be past the first
trimester of pregnancy during flu season, or anyone who is a
health care worker or anyone who has regular contact with
people in the high-risk group.
Healthy people who are not at risk are asked to wait until
December. Flu season normally peaks in January and lasts
through March, so getting vaccinated in December will leave
plenty of time for immunity to take effect, the U.S. Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)