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First round of swine flu shots may start earlier than expected – MedCity Morning Read, Sept. 14, 2009

The first swine flu shots may be available by the first week of October, as opposed to the middle of the month, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told ABC on Sunday. Early doses of the vaccine are intended for health care workers and other high-priority groups.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – The first swine flu shots may be available by the first week of October, as opposed to the middle of the month, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Sunday during ABC’s “This Week.”

Early doses of the vaccine for the virus, known as novel H1N1, are intended for health care workers and other high-priority groups, the Associated Press reported. The “target groups” identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention include pregnant women and people who live with or care for infants under 6 months old.

“Every state has a plan, saying, ‘These are the sites to get the vaccine as quickly as possible into people’s arms,'” Sebelius told George Stephanopoulos. “We will get it out to states as fast as it comes off the production lines.”

The possibility of an earlier start to H1N1 vaccine administration follows last week’s news that one dose – instead of two – might be enough for healthy adults. That means the vaccine supplies will go twice as far as had been predicted, The New York Times reported.

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