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Flu Vaccine Supplies Running Low

SCRANTON -- We are in the midst of flu season and the health care providers at Geisinger Community Medical Center in Scranton aren't expecting it to slow down anytime soon. They say they've seen an increase in flu cases since Christmas.

“Drastically increased in the past two weeks and we expect that to stay elevated for at least another two weeks if not more,” says Kevin Rinehimer, a registered trauma nurse at Geisinger CMC.

According to the Department of Health, so far this season the state of Pennsylvania has reported more than 17,000 cases of the flu, with a large increase in reported cases in our area, just in the past few weeks.

The increase in flu cases has caused some pharmacies, like The Medicine Shoppe in Scranton, to run out of the vaccine to help prevent it and remedies to deal with it.

“So, at this point, we're actually out of the flu shot and at this point, we're out of Tamiflu. In the last week, we sold quite a few to the people who are calling in that actually got the flu now,” says Dr. Lyn Ruane of The Medicine Shoppe on Pittston Avenue in Scranton.

And for pharmacies like Dr. Lyn Ruane's Medicine Shoppe, it can be hard to stock up.

"It's hard to get Tamiflu at this point cause of the outbreaks, so now you're trying to order it from your wholesalers and you can't get it to supply to your customers,” tells Dr. Ruane.

Tamiflu is a prescription that can help shorten the virus.

"Tamiflu is an anti-viral and that'll help with the viral replication process during the flu and it help shortens the virus,” says Rinehimer.

If you are diagnosed with the flu and are unable to get Tamiflu, both pharmacists and nurses at Geisinger Community Medical Center tell Newswatch 16 the best thing for you to do is to get plenty of rest and treat your symptoms.

"Gatorade, electrolyte replacers for treating the symptoms and any over the counter medicine just to treat any viral symptoms that are related to the flu,” adds Rinehimer.

If you have the flu, you should wait 24 hours after your fever breaks before heading back to work or school.  There are pharmacies in the area with the flu shot and Tamiflu available for customers. Call your pharmacy before heading out.

4 comments

  • Fake news

    This propaganda works on the ones that rely on fakestream media but for the rest of us we know these outlets are fake news.

  • 🤔

    I get the flu is bad this year but the media is just scaring the daylights out of people with the hype they’re putting on it. I remember back in the 90’s there was a huge flu outbreak. It’s not as big of deal as they’re making it out to be. Plus they push that stupid vaccine so much it’s crazy. I know people who got the shot in the past and ended up severely sick after they got it. They can keep their vaccine. Also they’re saying the vaccine is only a small percentage effective. To me it’s not worth getting. Like I said, they can keep their vaccine.

    • As If

      Welp, it’s always an annual crap shoot for “experts” to determine which strain of flu is going to be the most virulant. The media **has** to spread panic or there wouldn’t be any reason to check back to see who’s died in the past 45 minutes from the flu, right?

  • trucker

    No one I know has the flu. Doug Hagmann on the Hagmann report was discussing how Sharyl Attkisson did some good investigative reporting on the CDC back in 09 at CBS.

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