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H1N1 vaccination clinics delayed

By Staff | Oct 9, 2009

The Lee County Health Department plans to begin H1N1 vaccination clinics on Monday, Oct. 26, at area high schools. Sufficient quantities of H1N1 vaccine are not expected to arrive in time from the federal government to begin the clinics as previously reported. The Lee County Health Department will now need to delay the start of public vaccination clinics by one week.

“The start date was always contingent on having enough vaccine to operate public clinics. We are delaying the start of the public vaccination clinics by one week to increase our confidence that we will be able to meet demand” said Judith A. Hartner, M.D., M.P.H., M.P.A., Director of the Lee County Health Department.

For the public’s convenience, once H1N1 vaccine arrives in Lee County, free vaccinations will only be given at 12 high schools throughout the county. Everyone should eventually be vaccinated, but those in high risk categories will be given the first supplies of the vaccine. They include:

– Children and young adults age 6 months through 24 years

– Pregnant women

– People who live with or care for children younger than 6 months old

– Health care workers and emergency medical services personnel

– People age 25 through 64 years who have health conditions associated with higher risk of medical complications from influenza

Volunteers are still needed for all the clinic sites. To sign up to be a volunteer, dial 2-1-1, download an application at www.LeeEOC.com (located under the Breaking News section) or pick one up at your local library. The application can be submitted directly online, or you can fax or mail it (information located on the application form).

For more information on influenza activity there are a number of resources available such as the Florida Department of Health toll-free number which provides public health information and updates on H1N1 Swine flu. The information line is available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EDT, seven days a week. Information is available in English, Spanish and Creole. The Florida Flu Information Line is 1-877-352-3581.

For web-based information please visit any of the following websites:

Lee County Health Department, www.leechd.com

Florida Department of Health, www.doh.state.fl.us/DEMO/php/FluInfo.htm

My Safe Florida, www.myflusafety.com

The Centers for Disease Prevention and Control, http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/

The World Health Organization, (WHO), http://www.who.int/en/

Flu.gov, http://www.flu.gov/