By: Chang Ming-hsuan and Evelyn Kao
Taipei, March 17 (CNA) The government-funded seasonal influenza vaccination program will be expanded and made available free of charge to more people starting Oct. 1 through physician and public health clinics in light of the current influenza epidemic, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said Thursday.
In Taiwan, the flu season is considered October through March. The CDC said that over the past few years, doses of free flu vaccine were made available from Oct. 1 for high-risk groups, including people aged 65 and over; children between the ages of six months and elementary school students; patients with rare or acute diseases; health care workers; pregnant women, and people aged between 50 and 64 with high-risk chronic illnesses.
This year, the CDC will ask for NT$600 million (US$18.5 million)-700 million (US$21.5 million) in funding from the central government for the procurement of more flu vaccine doses, so that the agency can make an estimated 6.15 million doses available for eligible recipients, about 2.99 million doses more than last year, the agency said. [FULL STORY]