Thursday, December 16, 2004
Private doctors to receive 10,000 doses of flu vaccine from Division of Public Health for sickest patients

Delaware’s Division of Public Health (DPH) has ordered approximately 10,000 doses of flu vaccine to be shipped directly to private doctors by manufacturers. Doctors will use the vaccine to immunize their sickest patients. Seventy-six private Delaware medical providers will receive the vaccine within the next two-to-four weeks. Many of these providers have received little or no vaccine to date.
“This vaccine is intended for the sickest of the sick, not for the general public,” DPH director Jaime H. Rivera, M.D., said. “We’ve asked providers to contact and vaccinate patients who cannot safely attend our public flu vaccination clinics because of their illness or condition.” The vaccine is part of a state apportionment held by the vaccine manufacturer for Delaware. DPH has worked with representatives of physicians, hospitals, nursing homes and state legislators to make decisions about vaccine distribution. With the help of this group, DPH surveyed physicians about their vaccine needs and is distributing vaccine accordingly. Doctors will contact their sickest patients directly to schedule appointments for those individuals to receive flu shots. Please do not call your doctor to inquire about the vaccine. People who don’t have a regular doctor or whose doctors do not receive part of the vaccine shipment should keep watching the media for announcements for an additional DPH vaccine clinic, and take other measures to prevent flu, such as avoiding people who are sick, staying home when sick, and washing hands frequently.