Swine flu doses arrive; still no clinic

Despite receiving 200 doses of the H1N1 vaccine, Student Health Services (SHS) will not hold a clinic yet to distribute the vaccine.

SHS originally requested 2,500 doses of the swine flu vaccine but only received 200, said Medical Director of SHS Dr. Egilda Terenzi on Monday. SHS also requested 500 doses of the seasonal flu vaccine.

“There are less doses than expected because the swine flu and season vaccines are both being produced in the same laboratories,” she said. “Only so many doses can be made at one time.”

SHS will give priority to high-risk students, such as pregnant women and health care workers, while it waits for more doses, Terenzi said.

“We have been and will keep putting in orders for more,” she said. “We will continue to follow CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines while we try to get as much of the vaccine as possible.”

Terenzi said SHS expects to receive more of the vaccine, but can’t predict when and how many doses it will receive.

Part of the reason SHS received such a small amount is because Hillsborough County’s highest priority is young children, Terenzi said. Schools across the nation are having the same problems acquiring doses, she said.

Terenzi said H1N1 vaccine cultures, which are grown in hen eggs, are not producing as well as expected, contributing to the shortage of doses.

A health clinic, where students would be able to receive free shots for the seasonal flu, was originally scheduled for Oct. 23. It has been postponed, however. SHS still hopes to hold it in the future, Terenzi said.