Schuchat also addressed a CDC study released Wednesday that found that 33 percent of 77 deaths caused by the H1N1 flu resulted from bacterial pneumonia. The strain of bacteria in many cases -- streptococcus pneumonia -- is one for which there is a vaccine, she said, so adults should get the pneumococcal vaccine to prevent this complication. This holds true especially for people who have a chronic medical condition such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease and lung disease, she said.
Schuchat added that the H1N1 swine flu is widespread throughout the country, which is unusual for this time of the year. "There is significant flu activity in virtually all the states," she said.
To help combat the H1N1 flu, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is releasing 300,000 doses of the children's antiviral drug liquid Tamiflu to the states that need it. States will begin receiving those doses next week, Schuchat said.
Some of these doses of liquid Tamiflu have an expired expiration date, Schuchat said. "But we want people to know that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has extended the expiration date of those courses after careful testing," she explained.
Schuchat also said the distribution of H1N1 vaccine is progressing, with the first doses of the nasal spray Flumist to be distributed next week. Flumist is for people aged 2 to 49, but not for pregnant women and people with chronic medical conditions, she said.
So far, the government has orders from distribution sites for 600,000 doses of the nasal spray vaccine, Schuchat said. "We are at the beginning and we will be getting more vaccine regularly and states and large cities will be ordering regularly," she said.
Some doses of the injectable vaccine may also be available late next week, Schuchat said.
Officials have said they expect 45 million doses o
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