Shortages of flu vaccines and drugs have been reported across the country due to the early flu season. According to Reuters, Roche said it has a shortage of the liquid formulation of Tamiflu, and Sanofi, the largest flu vaccine provider in the United States, said it has sold out of four of six formulations of its Fluzone seasonal influenza vaccine.
The latest fluview report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that influenza activity continues to increase in the United States and most of the country is now experiencing high levels of influenza-like-illness.
It is reported that 41 states had widespread influenza activity, and 29 states and New York City had high influenza-like illness activity in the week ending Dec. 29.
CDC continues to recommend influenza vaccination for people who have not yet been vaccinated this season and antiviral treatment as early as possible for people who get sick and are at high risk of flu complications.
Here are some other prevention measures people can take:
• Staying home from work or school and limiting contact with others if you are experiencing influenza, cold or other respiratory illness symptoms.
• Covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
• Washing your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Use alcohol-based hand cleaners if soap and water are unavailable.
• Avoiding close contact with sick people.
• Avoiding touching your eyes, nose or mouth since germs spread this way.
• Getting an influenza vaccination.