INDIANAPOLIS-The 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine is now available to all Hoosiers who want it. The public can visit www.in.gov/flu and click on the Flu Shot Locator to find a location near them to get a flu vaccine.
More than 500 employees at the Indiana State Department of Health signed up to receive the 2009 H1N1 flu vaccine today at an onsite clinic, now that the vaccine is available to the general public. A clinic for all state employees is planned for early January.
Last week, State Health Commissioner Judy Monroe, M.D. and Marion County Health Director Virginia A. Caine, M.D. received their H1N1 flu shots at a Kroger pharmacy. According to the Children & Hoosiers Immunization Registry Program, as of December 15 at least 823,265 doses of the H1N1 flu vaccine had been administered in Indiana, of which 62 percent were between ages six months to 24 years.
"We have had success in vaccinating our priority groups in Indiana," said State Health Commissioner Judy Monroe, M.D. "Now that we have a substantial supply of vaccine, we are happy that we can offer it to all Hoosiers who want to receive it. Employers may wish to arrange vaccination clinics at their worksite."
According to Children and Hoosiers Immunization Registry Program (CHIRP) statistics, 21.8% of the estimated number of high risk persons in Indiana have received the vaccine. In addition, 24.7 percent of pregnant women and 46.7 percent of healthcare workers have been vaccinated.
Although the general public can now be immunized, it is still important for high risk individuals to receive their vaccine. These target risk groups include:
· Pregnant women;
· Children from six months to 24 years;
· People living with or caring for children under six months of age;
· Individuals from 25 to 64 years of age with underlying chronic conditions or who are immune compromised; and
· Health care providers and emergency medical services workers.
"It is still important for the priority groups to get vaccinated if they have not already," said Dr, Monroe. "Children younger than nine years should receive two doses of the vaccine. This is a great opportunity to get people vaccinated before a possible third wave of this pandemic influenza."
Local health departments will continue to provide the H1N1 flu vaccine for free. Pharmacies can charge a fee of up to $19.59 to administer the H1N1 flu vaccine.
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