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8/15/2000

More Adults to Receive Flu Vaccine

Katherine M. Bennett

Plan on using more influenza vaccine this fall than in previous years: The government’s chief advisory group on immunization wants all adults 50 years and older to receive a dose.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has released its recommendations for safeguarding against influenza in the upcoming season. There are two key changes pharmacists should note.

First, the age for universal vaccination has been lowered to 50 years from 65, which will have considerable impact on the amount of influenza vaccine required this fall. Second, because vaccine availability cannot be certain early in the fall, ACIP recommends extending large organized vaccination programs beyond mid-October.

The complete report can be accessed at ftp://ftp.cdc.gov/pub/Publications/mmwr/rr/rr4903.pdf.