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Notice to Readers: Supplemental Recommendations About the Timing of Influenza Vaccination, 2003--04 Season

In response to delays in production and distribution of influenza vaccine during 2000, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommended that first-available supplies of vaccine be administered to persons at increased risk for complications from influenza and to health-care workers. The committee also recommended that mass vaccination campaigns for the 2000--01 season be delayed until the availability of supply was assured (1,2). ACIP issued similar recommendations for the 2001--02 influenza season (3) and has incorporated this prioritization into its annual influenza recommendations (4).

To assist vaccinators in determining if administration of influenza vaccine should be prioritized because of anticipated delays or shortages, ACIP requested that CDC develop a process to assess the projected vaccine supply in advance of the influenza vaccination season. Each year, this process will be conducted collaboratively by CDC, the Food and Drug Administration, and the manufacturers who produce influenza vaccine.

On August 11, 2003, CDC determined that vaccine production for the 2003--04 influenza season is proceeding satisfactorily and that projected production and distribution schedules will allow for sufficient supply of influenza vaccine during October and November. Therefore, influenza vaccination can proceed for all high-risk and healthy persons, individually and through mass campaigns, as soon as vaccine is available.

Additional information about influenza and influenza vaccination is available from CDC at


  1. CDC. Delayed supply of influenza vaccine and adjunct ACIP influenza vaccine recommendations for the 2000-01 influenza season. MMWR 2000;49:619--22.
  2. CDC. Updated recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices in response to delays in supply of influenza vaccine for the 2000--01 season. MMWR 2000;49:888--92.
  3. CDC. Delayed influenza vaccine availability for 2001--02 season and supplemental recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. MMWR 2001;50:582--5.
  4. CDC. Prevention and control of influenza: recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). MMWR 2003;52(No. RR-8).

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