Flu vaccine in short supply on Whidbey Island

Seasonal flu vaccine-seekers are hard pressed to track down a pharmacy in Island County that offers the inoculations. Dr. Roger Case, health officer with the Island County Health Department, encourages people in the high-risk category — especially seniors — to go off-island if necessary to ensure they receive the vaccination.

  • Tuesday, October 27, 2009 5:53pm
  • News

Seasonal flu vaccine-seekers are hard pressed to track down a pharmacy in Island County that offers the inoculations.

Dr. Roger Case, health officer with the Island County Health Department, encourages people in the high-risk category — especially seniors — to go off-island if necessary to ensure they receive the vaccination.

“We’ve only received two-thirds the amount of seasonal flu vaccine that we expected to get by now,” he said. “I don’t expect for it to be available again in the county until mid-December.”

While public health clinics are short of vaccine, Pediatrics Associates of Whidbey on Cabot Drive in Oak Harbor has enough to last through the end of the month, according to Debbie Lacy, RN. This supply, however, is restricted to children.

“Island County still has a very limited stock when considering the whole community,” Lacy said.

Both Island Drug and Walgreens pharmacies are currently out of the seasonal flu vaccine.

Walgreens will probably not receive any more shipments this year, according to their lead pharmacist, who asked not to be named.

Aaron Syring, owner of Island Drug, said he’s received word that his next shipment is due in mid-November.

“The suppliers are at the mercy of the vaccine makers,” he said.

When the vaccine arrives, it’ll be available “every hour, every day,” that Island Drug is open, Syring said. “No appointments necessary.”

Island Drug will also offer the H1N1 swine flu vaccine as soon as they receive their first shipment, which is expected in the next couple of weeks, he said.

The injectable H1N1 vaccine is currently available at La Conner Drug, also owned by Syring. The doses are restricted to those in the priority-level category, set by the Center for Disease Control.

Pediatrics Associates of Whidbey has been inoculating its patients against H1N1 for the last three weeks, according to Lacy, but again, those doses are restricted to children, she said.

The H1N1 vaccine is arriving in 100-dose shipments, she said, and they’re likely to run out again soon, although she hopes to receive another shipment by Wednesday afternoon.

“What’s really tough is that you can’t schedule clinics in advance,” she said. “It’s really hard when you don’t know what you’re getting when.”

More in News

Chris Stack and Samantha Soule film a scene of their movie, "Midday Black, Midnight Blue," on the Coupeville wharf June 14. (Photo by Karina Andrew/Whidbey News-Times)
Indie crew films movie on Whidbey

Island becomes backup after Michigan locale falls through.

More federal relief money than expected headed to Whidbey

Whidbey Island will soon receive millions of dollars of American Rescue Plan funding.

Oak Harbor Public School photo - group
Oak Harbor top 10 reveal their plans post-high school

Oak Harbor High School seniors graduate on June 19.

Clockwise from top left: Drake Borden, Mollie Bailey, Marissa Malinowski, Owen Barenburg, Catherine Lhamon. (Photos provided)
Coupeville High School recognizes top five graduates

Coupeville High School’s top five seniors didn’t let a difficult pandemic year hold them back.

Photo courtesy America's Boating Club of Deception Pass
Inquiring minds hoping to nab that crab will have two opportunities to learn the tips and tricks of the trade this month before the recreational season opens July 1.
Boating Club holding free seminar on crabbing

Crabbers have two chances this month to learn tips and tricks before the season opens on July 1.

map
WhidbeyHealth lists vacant property for $727,500

WhidbeyHealth has listed a 4.56 acre vacant property for sale on the real estate website Zillow.

Annie Philp, center, leads student counter-protesters. (Photo by Karina Andrew/Whidbey News-Times)
Students counter a protest against social justice education

Hundreds of demonstrators lined the street in front of South Whidbey High School Friday afternoon.

A banner celebrating the South Whidbey High School class of 2021 was vandalized, and the Black Lives Matter banner next to it was stolen. (Photo provided by Josephine Moccia)
Black Lives Matter sign stolen from in front of school

A banner celebrating 2021 graduates was also left vandalized.

Port gets $100K grant to improve broadband

Island County commissioners voted last week to approve Port of Coupeville’s application for funding.

Most Read