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Swine Flu Vaccine Taking Longer Than Expected
Date:7/13/2009

last month formally declared a pandemic, triggered by the rapid spread of the H1N1 virus across North America, South America, Europe, Australia and regions beyond.

U.S. health officials have said they are considering a swine flu immunization campaign that could involve an unprecedented 600 million doses of vaccine. Still to be worked out is finding enough health-care workers to administer all those shots, and determining ways to record side effects if the vaccine is given at the same time as the seasonal flu vaccine, officials said.

The timing of the program depends on how fast a vaccine can be produced and tested. Preliminary trial vaccines are expected within several weeks, and some vaccine could be available by mid-October, Sebelius said Thursday.

What makes the H1N1 strain different from the typical seasonal flu is that about half of the people killed worldwide were young and previously healthy. In contrast, regular forms of the seasonal flu typically prove most lethal to the very young and the elderly.

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U.S. Human Cases of H1N1 Flu Infection
(As of July 10, 2009, 11 AM ET)
States and Territories* # of
confirmed and
probable cases
Deaths
Alabama
400
 
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