Flu jab demand shoots up

Broken Hill residents have already taken advantage of the free flu shots which may cause a local supply shortage.

Some chemists are worried they may run out of on-hand doses with the uptake of vaccinations rising since the NSW Government announced the cost-free jabs earlier this week.

Peoples CP Chemist part-owner and pharmacist, Jason Harvey, is hopeful more doses will arrive soon to backup stock during the month-long program.

“We might have enough (to last) for the rest of this month,” he said.

“Hopefully, we get some more next week. Might be a couple of days wait if we run short.”

Mr Harvey said the store received information about the State Government’s influenza vaccine program three days before its launch.

The pharmacy has been busy in the lead up to June and has already administered many flu shots.

The free jabs are part of a “blitz” to help combat the spike in flu cases in NSW that is likely to grow this winter.

“The flu season has been earlier and harder so it’s been a bit of a rush,” Mr Harvey said. “Everything has been sorted so it’s going OK.”

Amcal+ Pharmacy – located in Westside Plaza – expect more people to get protected against the flu.

“I think a lot of people who wanted it have already got it,” pharmacist Blake Mccallum said.

About half-a-dozen people presented for their shots by Wednesday afternoon, the same day the announcement was made.

The pharmacy is now tasked with securing more doses to keep up with the anticipated increased demand.

“Since that announcement, I haven’t been able to order more – we will probably run out,” Mr Mccallum said.

Chemists advise the public to book an appointment for the flu jab before arriving to the store.

“Due to the current stock situation and staff shortages, we can’t do walk-ins,” Mr Harvey said.

The vaccine is already free for those considered at higher risk of severe illness from the flu.

This includes children aged six months to five, pregnant women, people over 65 and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.

People may also be eligible to receive a flu shot with a COVID-19 vaccine.

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