Vaccine supply, demand out of sync during H1N1 outbreak: King

Ontario’s pandemic vaccine program was a classic case of supply-demand mismatch, a new report on the province’s response to the H1N1 outbreak suggests.

Ontario’s pandemic vaccine program was a classic case of supply-demand mismatch, a new report on the province’s response to the H1N1 outbreak suggests.

There wasn’t enough vaccine when the public was clamouring for it and by the time supplies had swelled, demand was fading, according to a report from Dr. Arlene King, the province’s chief medical officer of health.

“To be blunt, from Oct. 26 — the date of the launch of our H1N1 immunization program — there was never an alignment between H1N1 vaccine supply, demand and our capacity to deliver it,” King said.

King said a variety of factors were to blame, including the fact that the province didn’t know from one week to the next how much vaccine it would be getting from the federal government.

King estimated about 38 per cent of Ontarians were vaccinated, near the low end of vaccination rates among provinces and territories.