Demand for the shot exceeded supply. "There was a very enthusiastic response," more than anticipated, said Phil Hosbach, Sanofi's vice president of immunization policy and government relations.
Now supply is comfortably ahead of demand -- about 9 million doses should be available this year.
"Supply is good and we're not expecting any problems," said spokeswoman Donna Cary, adding that the company should be able to handle the 7-million-dose demand expected from the new recommendation.
The committee voted 11-1 in favor. The dissenter was Dr. Susan Lett of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, who felt the supply had only recently stabilized and that this step -- a reversal of last year's limitations -- might leave doctors confused.
Menactra is one of a half-dozen childhood and adolescent vaccines added to federal recommendations in recent years, which has driven the per-child cost of vaccination from $155 in 1995 to $900 for boys and $1,200 for girls.
More than 1 million children aren't able to get the meningitis shots paid for by private or public insurance, said Dr. Grace Lee, a Harvard researcher who presented results of a study she did on gaps in vaccine financing.
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