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H1N1 vaccine trickles into county

Nine thousand doses of the H1N1 vaccine were delivered to San Mateo County on Tuesday but the county still needs thousands more, a health department spokeswoman said today.

Health providers in San Mateo County were expecting to receive 90,000 doses of the vaccine by the end of the month, which were to be sent directly to the providers, San Mateo County Health System spokeswoman Robyn Thaw said.

Instead, the state health department sent only the 9,000 doses that the San Mateo County Health System had ordered to be used as extras in case a provider ran out, according to Thaw.

The 9,000 doses given to the county health system were then immediately distributed to providers, she said.

"The state did not provide anything directly to the providers in this last shipment," she said.

She added that had the county health system known the providers would not be receiving their requested doses, the San Mateo County Health System would have ordered more.

It's unclear when more doses will be delivered.

"At this point don't know when more is going to come in," Thaw said. "Supplies will be limited at first. We expect the doses to gradually increase over the month."

The vaccinations will be given to people in the high-risk group first, including pregnant women, caretakers of infants under six months, health care and emergency medical services personnel, children six months through 4 years, and children 5 through 18 years old who have chronic illness.

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