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H1N1 Q&A

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I'm pregnant, so I'm waiting for the unadjuvanted vaccine. When is that arriving?

That's the one bright spot in Friday's bad news. The province will get 9,200 doses of the unadjuvanted vaccine, which is more than expected. It should arrive Wednesday, and you could be rolling up your sleeve Thursday or Friday.

People who aren't on the priority list have been butting in line. Why hasn't the WRHA screened people more thoroughly at the clinics?

Several reasons. The priority list is admittedly quite broad. It would take a lot of time to question everyone in line about their chronic illness, their caregiver status, their aboriginal heritage, etc. And it would be a huge hassle for a lot of people to get doctor's notes or offer some kind of proof they're on the priority list. Those kinds of questions would only add to the hours-long waits and could cause some nasty conflicts if health staff turn people away. Manitoba Health is hoping people act responsibly and charitably and allow those most at risk to get the shot first. But now that there's a dramatic shortage of vaccine, the WRHA will start cracking down on queue-jumpers.

I'm an average, healthy person and not on the priority list. When can I get my shot?

Hopefully, in three to four weeks, but the way things are going it could be into December before enough vaccine arrives to get the high-priority people inoculated, allowing the clinics to accept low-risk people.

Are inmates getting the flu shot?

Yes, but only the inmates on the priority list. There are about 3,000 people in provincial custody and the ones at high risk -- those with chronic illnesses or substance abuse problems, aboriginal people -- have started to get the shot. Late next week or maybe the week after, depending on the vaccine's availability, the mobile clinics are expected to make stops at all the provincial jails and remand centres to inoculate the rest of the inmates and all corrections officers who want the shot.

 

VACCINE BY THE NUMBERS

Manitoba

First shipment: 134,000 doses, gone by Friday.

Second shipment: 72,000 doses arrived earlier this week and are already allocated to regional health authorities.

Third shipment: 15,500, expected Wednesday.

Winnipeg Regional Health Authority

First shipment: 59,000 doses, gone by Friday.

Second shipment: 30,000, enough to keep clinics stocked until Monday at best.

Third shipment: 7,000, expected Thursday.

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