Over the past two-weeks several scheduled drive-through flu clinics, including one set-up through the Greenbrier County Health Department, were forced to be cancelled or rescheduled due to a shortage of the vaccine.
Through a post on social media dated October 14, the Greenbrier County Health Department stated, “Due to a vaccine shortage, the drive through flu clinic scheduled for tomorrow at the WV State Fair will be cancelled. We will reschedule when more vaccine arrives. We are sorry for any inconvenience.”
While a shortage of available vaccine may be viewed as a potentially good situation, meaning the program’s popularity has led to a larger than normal amount of residents getting vaccinated, it does highlight potential concerns. Chief among those concerns are how long will the shortage last, and will there be enough vaccines available for the duration of the flu season? As of the time of writing, the Greenbrier County Health Department has not announced a new date for the drive-through flu clinic.
During his October 21 coronavirus response media-briefing, West Virginia Governor Jim Justice was directly asked about the potential for a statewide shortage of flu vaccine.
“I do not think that there is going to be a shortage,” Justice said. “I have not heard from anyone who said there is going to be a shortage of the flu vaccine.”
Dr. Ayne Amjad, commissioner of the West Virginia department of health and human resources, also addressed the concerns surrounding any potential shortage.
“We are keeping track of that, and we have been having issues with that every year,” Amjad said. “There’s always some question if there’s a shortage, but we’re not anticipating anything right now. We have a lot of health departments looking at that, and we’re even helping some nursing homes get supplies. But we’re keeping track of that daily. We should be good.”