Phoenix, AZ – The reason is simple: These first 70,000 doses are in the form of
a nose spray. That contains a weakened version of the virus
designed to build up immunity. But because it is a live virus,
its use is not recommended for people with certain conditions.
And that includes pregnant women who are at the top of the state
priority list for getting vaccinated. Maricopa County health
chief Bob England said it makes sense to give the available doses
to health workers, especially hospital employees who come in
direct contact with patients. But he said that, unlike some other
states, it won't be forced on anyone.
(When you get offered this vaccine, please take it. No one is
going to be more likely in the face of the most vulnerable
patients we have than health care workers. The last thing in the
world you want to do is accidentally infect somebody who you've
worked so desperately hard to try and help.)
Acting state health director Will Humble said the first 800,000
to a million innoculations with the killed virus -- the one more
suitable for those at risk -- should begin arriving toward the
middle or end of October, with the balance of the state's 4
million doses in the following months. For Arizona Public Radio
this is Howard Fischer.