Posted: Jan 14, 2013 10:11 AM by MTN News
MISSOULA - All of the news about the nation's flu epidemic brought a run on flu shots in Western Montana over the weekend, with some locations reporting they were running low, or even running out of vaccine.
Montana has been running behind the other states in the number of flu cases, although health officials in Missoula and Flathead counties have reported am upswing in the number of cases since the first of the year.
The message for people to get their shots seemed to have take hold over the weekend, with some pharmacies reporting they had run out or were running low as people took time to get vaccinated during their shopping trips.
Some major outlets, like Costco in Missoula, had run out of vaccine by Saturday but were expecting more supplies to come in earlier this week. Other pharmacies had shots still available, but sometimes at a much higher price.
Other major pharmacy chains were reporting that they were getting quite low on vaccines, but more shipments are expected to arrive this week. CVS told of Monday morning that they were out of the flu vaccine on Monday, and there was no word on if they'd be getting more in the future.
Missoula City-County Health Department spokesman Cindy Hotchkiss says vaccine supplies are adequate to run through the rest of the flu season.
However, Ravalli County Health Department Director Judy Griffin reported late last week that they were out of flu vaccine right now, but had enough to vaccinate folks who had appointments on Friday and Monday.
Idaho has also been hit by influence, with eight deaths reported so far this season. Montana has seen one death related to the flu so far.