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December, 6, 2016

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Government to expand free flu vaccine scheme

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Taiwan government will open up its free flu vaccine program to the wider public in December, following the successful vaccination of high-risk groups over the past two months, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said Tuesday.

Approximately 780,000 vaccines will be made available to the general public with effect from Dec. 1 and will be administered until they run out, the CDC said.

It said people are urged to get the shots as soon as possible since the vaccine does not fully kick in until two weeks after it is administered.

The government launched its free flu vaccination program on Oct. 1, administering 5.22 million doses to people who are considered at high risk of developing complications from the flu virus, according to the CDC.

In the 50-64 age group, the vaccination rate was 17 percent, and among pregnant women it was around 25 percent, the CDC said.

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