. . . Meanwhile, some providers remain skeptical about flu vaccine supplies
About 1 million high-risk people in Pennsylvania will not be able to get flu shots this year -- despite an infusion of 340,000 new doses of vaccine from the federal government, the state's health department director said Wednesday.
"Unfortunately, as a result of the nationwide vaccine shortage, it is possible that not all high-risk people who need and want a vaccination will be able to receive one," said Health Secretary Dr. Calvin B. Johnson in an Associated Press report.
Officials have said, however, that residents and workers at long-term care facilities, as well as hospital employees, would be first in line for the additional doses from the federal government.
That's "certainly welcome news," says Ron Barth, president and CEO of PANPHA, the state's association for non-profit nursing homes and senior care providers. He said an internal survey several weeks ago showed there was enough vaccine for only about 30% of residents. He and other nursing home leaders are hoping for the best but remain worried that a few cases of the flu could quickly multiply in any long-term care setting not yet adequately supplied with vaccine.