Hepatitis vaccine shortage: Doctors affected due to lack of hepatitis vaccine, supply expected by September | Ahmedabad News


Ahmedabad: It is important for medical students and professionals, including doctors and nurses, to get vaccinated against hepatitis B as they interact very closely with patients. However, many hospitals and nursing homes, especially in the private sector, are facing vaccine shortages. The two major producers of the vaccine have indicated that regular supplies will resume only around September, said city-based suppliers. Dr Ripa Vaishnav, a physician at Epic Hospital, said the vaccine has been in short supply for the past two months. “On an average, we give around 40-50 shots to both medical professionals and patients. For medical professionals, one needs to take one shot and then a booster shot after a month. This is good for at least a decade as they undergo a test to detect resistance levels,” she said. Hepatitis B is a viral infection that affects the liver and spreads mainly in medical settings through needles, syringes and drug-injection equipment. It can also spread if operation theatres are not properly sanitised. Ravi Patel, a city-based supplier of medical drugs and vaccines to various hospitals, said supplies have been impacted by two India-based manufacturers. “In the pediatric group, the combined vaccine is not impacted where hepatitis B is part of multiple doses. But when it comes to a single shot, its supply is short. Most suppliers are supplying from stock. Manufacturers have indicated production and supply will be stable by September,” he said. A May 29 letter from Serum Institute of India Pvt Ltd indicated that the Genevac-B vaccine in 0.5 ml, 1 ml and 10 ml doses would not be available until the end of September 2024. The letter did not specify the reason for the shortage.

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