CVS Caremark Corp. and Rite Aid Corp., two of the largest U.S. drugstore chains, said they are running short of influenza vaccines as an earlier and more severe flu season drives up demand from Michigan to New Jersey.

Requests for the shots at CVS are unprecedented for this time of year and the company is working to resupply its pharmacies and clinics, said Mike DeAngelis, a spokesman for the Woonsocket, R.I.-based chain, in an e-mail. Rite Aid is moving supply from location to location, said Ashley Flower, a spokeswoman for the Camp Hill, Penn.-based company.

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