US Aim: ‘Take Flu Off The Table’ In Preparation For Second Wave of Coronavirus

June 30, 2020 by Christen Aldrich

Filed under COVID-19 for Employers, COVID-19 for the Workforce

Last modified July 1, 2020

According to the Medical Society of the State of New York, drugmakers are making millions of extra flu shots this year in preparation for a possible second wave of COVID-19 during the annual flu season, and in a rare move, the CDC has bought 7 million doses directly from them. The CDC usually buys about 500,000 doses of the flu shot to distribute to states but has spent $100 million to buy 7 million doses and has given $140 million to immunization programs across the U.S. to boost adult flu vaccination. Drugmakers are planning to boost production by about 10 percent to make 189 million doses this year, up from 170 million last year. Public health experts are expecting an “unprecedented” number of people to get a flu shot this year, according to the Post.

Experts have said lowering the number of people who catch the flu could free up critical hospital space to handle a potential second wave of COVID-19. Health officials are especially concerned about people at higher risk for both COVID-19 and the flu, the Post reported, such as residents and employees at long-term care facilities, African Americans, Hispanics, and people with comorbidities.

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