Department Offers H1N1 To All
State officials announced two new developments in their H1N1 vaccination efforts.
First, they have asked local health departments to use recent increases in H1N1 vaccine supplies to get the vaccine to many more private provider offices. Secondly, they noted that beginning in mid- to late-December, H1N1 vaccination clinics will be expanded to include all individuals interested in being vaccinated.
That is exactly what is happening at the Wetzel-Tyler Health Department. The local entity will be offering the following H1N1 clinics for the groups specified on the dates listed below:
Dec. 17 from 4-7 p.m.: pregnant women, anyone from six months-24 years of age, those who live with or care for infants younger than six months of age, all health care or emergency medical personnel, persons age 25-64 with long-term health problems (heart disease, lung disease, asthma, kidney or liver disease, diabetes, anemia, or a weakened immune system), and children age six months to nine years scheduled to receive second dose of vaccine.
Dec. 18 from 9 a.m. to noon: any and all persons age six months and older. Please call 304-337-2001 to schedule an appointment.
Dec. 22 from 1-3 p.m.: children age six months to nine years scheduled to receive second dose of vaccine as well as any and all persons age six months and older. Please call 304-337-2001 to schedule an appointment.
Dec. 29 from 1-4 p.m.: any and all persons age six months and older. Please call 304-337-2001 to schedule an appointment.
If you are moderately or severely ill, you will be advised to wait until you recover before receiving the vaccine. If you have a mild cold or other illness, there is usually no reason to wait.
If you should have any other questions or need further information, please contact the Wetzel-Tyler Health Department at 304-337-2001 or for more information about the H1N1 vaccine visit www.wvflu.org.
State Health Officer Dr. Cathy Slemp, who is leading the fight against H1N1 in West Virginia, says, “As supplies continue to increase, we’re entering a transitional period with how we distribute the H1N1 vaccine. We have asked health departments to extend the H1N1 vaccine to as many enrolled primary care clinics, pediatricians, OB/GYNs, family practice, internists, and other providers who reach high risk populations as possible during the next two weeks.
To date, 375,800 doses of H1N1 vaccine have been distributed. Inclusion of private providers in H1N1 vaccination efforts is not new. The state recommendation to local health departments has always been to extend H1N1 vaccine into the private healthcare sector as much as vaccine supplies allow.
“We are receiving more H1N1 vaccine each week, as we expected. As supply increases, we need to further extend that vaccine into the private sector, and we are at that point. Provider offices are great partners and critical for reaching those who can most benefit from vaccine,” Slemp said.