Flu vaccine shipments delayed to Columbia health department

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COLUMBIA - All shipments of injectable flu vaccine to the Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services have been delayed.

Paxton Keeley Elementary School parents received an email Wednesday to inform them about the delay. The email said school-based flu clinics will remain as scheduled, but FluMist nasal spray will be the only vaccine administered until the injectable vaccine becomes available.

One Paxton Keeley Elementary School parent, Tami Herman, said her children have typically been getting the FluMist.

"I don't have an opinion about the mist or the injection, just as long as my kids are safe from the flu," said Hermann.

Hermann said neither vaccine is better than the other.

"If I had to choose, I would like a mist vaccine over a needle injection," said Hermann.

Her daughter also said she prefers the mist every year because she does not like getting shots.

But some children and adults can't get the FluMist for medical reasons. Some people are only allowed to take the injectable vaccine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said someone should not take the FluMist for many reasons including: Children younger than two years, adults 50 years and older, people with a history of severe allergic reaction to any component of the vaccine, people who are allergic to eggs, pregnant women, people of any age with asthma, and more.

The Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services Nursing Supervisor Trina Teacutter said the FluMist and injectable vaccine have the same effect.

"FluMist is for healthy individuals ages 2-49, and it is administered through a nasal spray where a little bit is administered on each side of the nose. It is as effective as the injectable," said Teacutter.

She said a delay in shipment happens sometimes, and they just have to work around it.

Teacutter also said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention came out with a recommendation this year to use the FluMist over injectable for younger age groups because it is more effective.

"We find that the younger the child is the more likely they are to get the FluMist," said Teacutter.

The email said shipment should be available in early November, but Teacutter said she has no idea when it will arrive.

"We do have FluMist available so if that's an option I encourage people to do that. Some people feel strong about getting the shot over the mist so that might be your personal preference that you can wait until we have that in a greater supply," Teacutter.

To see the full list of people health professionals do recommend use FluMist, and learn more about FluMist or the flu vaccine visit click here