WINDSOR -- Help is on the way to alleviate a flu vaccine shortage for staff at Windsor Regional Hospital.

Hospital officials say the flu shot is available for patients, but the vaccine is limited for the staff.

So far, just over 260 vaccines have been delivered for more than 4,000 employees and another shipment is on the way.

Initially the delivery was expected on Nov. 15, but officials tell CTV News that date has been expedited.

Manager of Infection Prevention and Control, Erika Vitale, says the vaccine for staff and patients needs be kept separately.

Until the shipment arrives, staff are asked to get the flu shot at a pharmacy or through their family doctor.

"There's really no excuse for anyone whether, it's a staff member at the hospital or a member of the public," says Vitale. "The government has done a lot of work to make it very easy for us to have this accessible so there's really no excuse and i think we can find it in other venues if we have to."

Health officials have predicted an earlier and stronger flu season, due to an increase in the number of influenza cases in Australia so far during the country's winter.

Erie Shores Healthcare has reported an increase in the number of patients with flu-like symptoms.

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is hosting its influenza clinic on Nov. 18.