Pharmacies Reluctant to Give Children Flu Shots

Monday, Jan 14, 2013  |  Updated 6:36 AM EDT
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The Debrief with David Ushery: Fighting the Flu in 2013

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Flu Emergency in New York: Cuomo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a public health emergency for the entire state, allowing pharmacists to administer flu vaccinations to children 6 months and older. Jonathan Vigliotti reports.

The Debrief with David Ushery: Fighting the Flu in 2013

As the influenza numbers rise this year, NBC's Dr. Nancy Snyderman visits The Debrief with David Ushery to talk about what we can do to protect ourselves from the illness and stop it from spreading. (Jan 13, 2013 - Part 2)
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Some pharmacies are reluctant to offer flu shots to children, despite action by Gov. Andrew Cuomo authorizing them to do so.
   
New York joined Massachusetts Saturday in temporarily allowing pharmacies to vaccinate minors between 6 and 18 years old, but pharmacies like CVS say many technicians aren't trained or certified to administer to the vaccine to children.

"We are working as quickly as possible to allow CVS pharmacists to vaccinate patients under the age of 17 years as the emergency order allows," said CVS spokesman Michael DeAngelis in an email. "However, the order did not address other related issues that we are in the process of resolving before our pharmacists can vaccinate minors."

Cuomo declared a public health emergency for the entire state in response to the spreading flu. The move came as the number of patients admitted to hospitals throughout the state with confirmed cases of influenza spiked 55 percent last week.

Two children have died from the virus, according to the state Health Department.

Cuomo called it "the worst flu season since at least 2009," and said all New Yorkers should have access to "critically needed flu vaccines."

The executive order suspends the section of state law that limits pharmacists to administer immunizations to people 18 and older.

New Yorkers can find flu vaccine providers here, or by calling 800-522-5006.

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