H1N1 Flu Clincs Begin This Week

Jackson County Health Department will start offering the H1N1 flu vaccine to generally healthy people ages 4 to 24 years old beginning tomorrow, Nov. 5.
The health department wrapped up a series of flu clinics last week that targeted specific groups as recommended by the Indiana State Department of Health, including pregnant women, health care providers and emergency service providers. Thursday’s clinic focused on people with underlying or chronic illnesses who could be at a greater risk for contracting the flu or suffering more with the flu.
Tight supplies of the vaccine have resulted in some criticism of the health department’s handling of the vaccine, but Lin Montgomery, the department’s public health coordinator, stressed officials are following state and federal guidelines or recommendations.
“Now that we have targeted and provided vaccines according to CDC guidelines, we are anticipating the ability to provide vaccine to a broader base of individuals in November,” she said. “The supply of vaccines is still limited but increasing slowly and we are still confident that we will eventually receive an adequate supply to meet the need in Jackson County.”
The clinics are designed to provide vaccines to the largest targeted group, those between the ages of 4 and 18 years, and will include legal guardians and siblings.
“We want everyone to know that these clinics will be open to all youth and their families in Jackson County,” Montgomery said. “We anticipate conducting clinics in the outlying areas of Freetown, Medora, Brownstown and Crothersville at future dates and locations and as supplies allow, but want to encourage anyone wishing to be vaccinated to consider attending one of the scheduled clinics at the health department in November.”
In anticipation of a continued and increased supply of the vaccine, the health department has established the following dates for flu clinics to be conducted at its office, 801 W. Second St., Seymour: Those flu clinics are for otherwise healthy Jackson County youth between the ages of 4 and 24 and their immediate family members, defined as legal guardians and siblings, Montgomery said.
Youth must be accompanied by their caregivers or, for youth ages 16 to 18, must have a signed consent form if not accompanied by their legal guardian.
Consent forms may be obtained at the health department or at high school offices.
All clinics will open and close at designated times, and all will be on a walk-in basis. No appointments are necessary.
Montgomery cautioned that all clinics are subject to change depending upon vaccine availability.
Individuals with flu-like symptoms such as sneezing or coughing, body aches and/or fever are asked not to come to clinic sites until free of symptoms.
“At this time, we have conducted four target-specific clinics, following the recommendations made by the Centers for Disease Control, and will continue to follow their recommendations until such time as we have met that need and have received adequate supplies to provide vaccine to the general population,” Montgomery said. “Limited supplies have also been made available to a number of medical providers in the county and will continue to be offered as the supplies increase.”
H1N1 clinics are scheduled:
Thursday, Nov. 5 —5 to 8 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 7 —9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Monday, Nov. 9 —5 to 8 p.m..
Thursday, Nov. 12 —5 to 8 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 14 —9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Tuesday, Nov. 17 —5 to 8 p.m.
(This clinic is to give the recommended second dose to children who were inoculated at the Oct. 20 clinic. The CDC recommends a second dose for children younger than the age of 10. All other children between the ages of 2 to 4 may also attend.)
Thursday, Nov. 19 —5 to 8 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 21 —9 a.m. to 1 p.m.