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Flu shot rush depletes vaccine stock, but doctor’s association says there’s no shortage

Amidst the coronavirus pandemic, concerned Australians have rushed to get the flu vaccine, causing many pharmacies and medical clinics to run out, but the Australian Medical Association says there is no serious shortage.

A nationwide campaign encouraging Australians to go get their flu shot was launched on April 1, and the public responded with overwhelming enthusiasm, depleting stocks.

But president of the Australian Medical Association, Dr Tony Bartone, said there isn’t a long-term vaccine shortage.

“Australians … responded marvelously and perhaps over-enthusiastically went down and sought to get their flu vaccine on that first or second day,” he told 3AW’s Ross and John.

“Of course the logistics didn’t match the early demand and over the next few days what stock was in general practices and pharmacies ran out.”

But Dr Bartone said stocks are now being replenished as demand levels out.

“In most practices in Melbourne, yes, you probably would get one today,’ he said.

This year more than three million people have already received the flu vaccine, up from about a million at the same time last year.

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