Delivery of Sanofi flu vaccines to be delayed

July 10, 2019

Delivery of Sanofi Pasteur flu vaccines will be delayed by about one month this fall, according to the manufacturer, and first reported by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). The delay impacts the company’s three flu vaccines, including Fluzone Quadrivalent, which is approved for children and adults.

Responding to an inquiry from Healthcare Purchasing News, Sanofi said the World Health Organization and the Food and Drug Administration delayed vaccine virus strain selection to better match circulating strains of H3N2 viruses.

“The WHO postponed selection of the A(H3N2) strain to be included in the vaccine for the Northern Hemisphere by one month after observing antigenic drift in the circulating strain,” Michael Szumera, Head of US Communications, Sanofi Pasteur, told HPN. “This allowed health authorities to collect additional data to help improve the match of the vaccine strain to the A(H3N2) strain anticipated to circulate during the 2019 – 2020 season. Manufacturing could not begin until the selection was made by WHO and confirmed by the FDA.

“We are still on track to produce approximately 70 million doses of seasonal vaccine to support nationwide immunization campaigns,” Szumera continued. “At this time, we anticipate a slight delay of approximately one month in the first shipment of our vaccine, which will be the case across all manufacturers. Shipping of our products will begin in mid-August, with all shipments completed by the end of November.”