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NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston got about 800 doses in October and 1,400 more in November, some of which were sent on to other NASA operations. At Johnson, doses were offered first to employees in priority groups, but NASA also set aside doses for healthy astronauts and their families.
Some doctors' offices gave it to healthy patients if people at risk didn't show up, said Dr. Jim Lederer, an official with Novant Health, a North Carolina-based hospital system.
Merck got 200 doses in October and 200 in November at its corporate headquarters in New Jersey. A Boeing Co. site in Washington state received 100 doses in mid-October and 100 more the next month. A Hovensa oil refinery in the Virgin Islands got 500 doses in early November, a Nucor Steel plant in South Carolina was given 100, and Hallmark Cards Inc. in Kansas City received 100.
Some of the eyebrow-raising shipments to Wall Street firms like Goldman Sachs came to light last year. The New York Stock Exchange got 200 doses by late October. Morgan Stanley in Purchase, N.Y., received 1,000 doses by early November, though the company said it turned over its entire supply to local hospitals when it learned it got shipments before some area hospitals.
In Georgia, nine prisons and jails got 2,300 doses in October and November. Corrections officials were worried that swine flu would spread fast in crowded lockups.
CDC records show only where initial shipments of 100 doses or more were sent -- not where they all wound up, since that was up to state and local health officials.
To some extent, state and city health departments followed different philosophies. Indiana channeled almost all its vaccine to local health departments. New York City and some states made more use of company health clinics. Which approach worked better is not clear.
Frieden stressed that early shortages were mainly due to manufacturing delays. When the vaccine did come in, getting it out quickly was the top priority -- not making sure every dose got to the most vulnerable people, he said.
The CDC is working out kinks, he added. For example, the agency is replacing a glitchy computerized ordering system that doubled and tripled some of the ordered amounts sent to three states for a couple of weeks.
Given the circumstances, health officials did "a very respectable job," Colgrove said. The assessment might have been harsher had the virus turned out to be more deadly, he added.
"In a way, we really dodged a bullet," he said.
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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