News Release

PO 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360
Christine Grant
Commissioner
For Release:
November 6, 2000
For Further Information Contact:
Marilyn Riley (609) 984-7160
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Federal Contract Makes Additional Flu Vaccine Available to Health Care Providers

TRENTON -- Physicians, clinics, nursing homes and other health care providers may now apply for additional influenza vaccine that is available through a federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention contract with Aventis-Pasteur Inc., the vaccine manufacturer.

Priority is being given to providers who plan to vaccinate primarily persons at high-risk for complications of the flu. Seniors and persons with chronic health conditions such as diabetes are among those most likely to develop complications that can lead to hospitalization, loss of independence or even death.

CDC has contracted with Aventis-Pasteur Inc. to produce an additional 9 million vaccine doses this influenza season. This vaccine is not intended to substitute for vaccine that is already ordered and expected to be delivered. The CDC estimates that with these additional doses, about 75 million vaccine doses will be available this influenza season, which is comparable to the previous season's supply.

Applications to purchase vaccine should be sent directly to Aventis-Pasteur Inc. Additional information about the application process and vaccine availability may be obtained by telephone at (800) 720-8972, or on the Internet at www.vaccineshoppe.com. Completed application forms can be faxed to (888) 889-7129. Vaccine delivery will begin December 12 and end by early January 2001.

If doses remain available, wholesale vaccine distributors who need additional supplies may apply to purchase vaccine beginning December 4.

The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services has posted a listing of flu immunization clinic dates, time and locations on the web at www.state.nj.us/health/flu.

The website, which is updated daily and searchable by county and town, lists the availability of both flu shots and the once-in-a-lifetime pneumococcal vaccine. The "pneu" shot is generally given only once to seniors age 65 and older and protects them from almost all the bacteria that cause pneumococcal diseases, such as septicemia, meningitis and pneumonia.

People without web access at home or in their local library may call their county office on aging, local health department, NJ EASE toll-free at 1-877-222-3737, or the peer Review Organization of New Jersey's Health Hotline toll-free at 1-866-269-4325.

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