Klobuchar seeks better pandemic preparationsby Mark Zdechlik, Minnesota Public Radio
Minneapolis — U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar says the country needs to modernize the production of vaccines and take steps to decrease the nation's dependence on foreign producers.
Klobuchar, DFL-Minn., held a roundtable discussion at the University of Minnesota Friday to look into problems with the production and distribution of the H1N1 vaccine.
Last week the head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the current supply of H1N1 flu vaccine is likely to wane before a shortage of the vaccine is filled.
Klobuchar said 80 percent of the nation's flu vaccine supply is produced outside of the United States, using 1950s-era technology.
"Beyond the challenge of vaccine production, our country needs to be better prepared in other ways," said Klobuchar. "State public health officials need to have better information about when and where the vaccines will be available. There have been too many misunderstandings and too many mixed messages."
Klobuchar said the federal government needs to provide American companies with incentives to modernize vaccine production.