For immediate release: Jan 11, 2010
Posted by: [Flu]
Contact: Jennifer Dunlap
Phone: (317) 233-7315

Hoosiers Reminded 'It's Not Too Late To Get The H1N1 Flu Vaccine'

INDIANAPOLIS- During the week of January 10-16, Indiana will be joining a nationwide effort spearheaded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to urge more Americans to get vaccinated against the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus.

"We are at a critical moment in the fight against the 2009 H1N1 influenza," said State Health Commissioner Judy Monroe, M.D.  "The virus is still circulating and continues to be the predominant strain worldwide.  It is definitely not too late to get the H1N1 flu vaccine.

"Hoosiers cannot become complacent about this virus," warned Dr. Monroe.  "H1N1 is not going away anytime soon.  And, this virus is behaving a lot like the 1957-58 Asian flu pandemic."

According to Dr. Monroe, the 1957-58 flu pandemic appeared in the United States with a series of small outbreaks over the summer of 1957.  When children went back to school in the fall, they spread the disease in classrooms and brought it home to their families.  Infection rates were highest among school children, young adults, and pregnant women in October 1957.  By December 1957, the worst seemed to be over.  However, during January and February 1958, there was another wave of illness among older Americans and ultimately the largest number of deaths was in this group.

"What we learned from the 1957-58 pandemic is influenza has the potential during a pandemic to infect one group of people first, appear to decrease, and then cause a larger number of infections in a different part of the population."

One of the many goals for National Influenza Vaccination Week is to engage people who are not yet vaccinated, hesitant about vaccination, or unsure about where to get vaccinated.  Certain days during the week are designated to highlight the importance for certain groups, like seniors and individuals with chronic diseases, to get vaccinated.

So far, more than one million Hoosiers have received the H1N1 flu vaccine.  Counties throughout Indiana are conducting outreach efforts and vaccination clinics this week to increase the number of Hoosiers vaccinated against H1N1.  Following is a schedule of events the State Health Department is participating in during National Influenza Vaccination Week:

DAY

NATIONAL FOCUS

INDIANA EVENTS

Monday, January 11

General audience and health care workers

H1N1 flu clinic for state employees at the Indiana Government Center.  News conference with:

·         Lieutenant Governor Becky Skillman

·         Deputy State Health Commissioner Loren Robertson

·         State Personnel Department Director Dan Hackler

·         Indiana Department of Homeland Security Executive Director Joe Wainscott

Tuesday, January 12

People with chronic health conditions that put them at high risk of serious influenza-related complications

·         Dr. Monroe participates in media event with Elkhart County Health Department in Elkhart.

·         Loren Robertson appears at an H1N1 flu vaccine clinic in Fort Wayne (Allen County).  

Wednesday, January 13

Children, pregnant women, and caregivers of infants less than six months old

Dr. Monroe participates in media events with the Johnson County Health Department in Franklin and the Vigo County Health Department in Terre Haute.

Thursday, January 14

Young adults (19-24 years old)

Dr. Monroe will join the Marion County Health Department at a vaccine clinic at the IUPUI campus in Indianapolis.

Friday, January 15

Seniors

Dr. Monroe visits Gary City and East Chicago health departments to promote the H1N1 flu vaccine among seniors.

 

"We now have plenty of vaccine available, which has allowed us to change our vaccination strategy in 2010.  We strongly encourage everyone, especially seniors, to seek out the vaccine."

"We are working diligently with different partners to get the vaccine out to Hoosiers, including local health departments, pharmacies, businesses, employers, and many others," added Dr. Monroe.  "Local health departments will continue offering the vaccine for free to their residents.  There are also plans to have H1N1 vaccines available to the public at shopping malls, airports and other public gathering sites in the coming weeks.'

Information on where to get the H1N1 flu vaccine can be found at www.in.gov/flu by clicking on the Flu Shot Locator (operated by Google) or by calling 1-877-826-0011.

National Influenza Vaccination Week is a national observance that was established to highlight the importance of continuing influenza vaccination, as well as foster greater use of flu vaccine after the holiday season into January and beyond.   For more information, including public service announcements, visit: www.cdc.gov/Features/FluPrevention

 

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Hoosiers Reminded 'It's Not Too Late To Get The H1N1 Flu Vaccine' Jan 11, 2010 content_id:DC11D48BCFED4B16BB9A8E3530DC9155; type:press; agency:Flu; showOnHomepage:Yes; sortDate:Jan 11, 2010; filterDate:201001; isBanner:no; agencyDivision:Flu;01 - January;2010;Press Release;Show on Home