First H1N1 Vaccine Released Will Be Nasal Spray

September 21, 2009

The first 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine to become available will be a nasal spray that contains live attenuated virus, said CDC health officials.

The first 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine to become available will be a nasal spray that contains live attenuated virus, said CDC officials. The vaccine is expected to be distributed by the first week of October. Initially, about 3.4 million doses of vaccine will be available. 

However, the nasal vaccine is not recommended for children younger than age 2; persons with chronic underlying conditions, such as diabetes and lung disease; pregnant women; and persons older than age 49. These are among the groups at highest risk for influenza-related complications.

Federal health officials noted that the influenza season has started earlier than usual in the United States and that the vast majority of disease is attributable to novel H1N1 virus. “So far we find that the virus that’s circulating right now is a good match to the new vaccine that’s being developed and being manufactured and distributed,” said Dr Daniel Jernigan, deputy director of CDC’s Influenza Division.