Local News

Many Rush To Get Flu Shot Before Supply Runs Out

Posted December 9, 2003 3:30 a.m. EST

— Many people are rushing to get their flu shots, especially after word that the two companies that make the vaccine are all out.

While the Cumberland County Health Department does not have any flu shots left, Cape Fear Valley Medical Center seems to be in pretty good shape. Nurses spent Monday morning giving out roughly 100 shots.

It is the first year the hospital has done its "Shoo the Flu" program, and it has worked out to their advantage because the hospital ordered about 8,000 vials well before the shortage.

Hospital representatives said they still had 4,000 shots left.

Kathleen Vassaur wanted her daughter to get a shot, especially once she learned the vaccine was in short supply.

"We definitely wanted to be prepared and plan ahead and prevent any unnecessary sickness in the family," she said.

Dr. Julie Gergerding, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said people should not be alarmed about news of the vaccines running out.

"I hope people don't panic because there are things we can do to help those who need it the most get it," she said. In addition, in particular, if you have a fever and a flu-like illness, you probably should stay home so that you don't serve as a source of infection to others."

Experts said it takes four months for companies to make flu shots. For information regarding local-area flu vaccinations, contact your local health department or the state Immunization Branch at

(919) 733-7752.