By Kay Braddock
With Prairie County’s Flu Vaccination Clinic completed last week, a month ahead of it’s typical time frame, county health officials are now gearing up for the vaccination of those in the high risk group for the H1N1 virus.
High risk groups for the H1N1 virus includes: Daycare providers, pregnant women, those who care for children 6 months old and younger, children 6 months to 4-year-old and children 5-years-old to 18-years-old with underlying conditions.
Although many of the symptoms caused by the H1N1 virus, commonly referred to as swine flu, are similar to those caused from seasonal flu viruses, Prairie County Health Nurse Joan Hubber noted that the H1N1 virus typically causes more vomiting and diarrhea.
Remembering the basics is key to alleviating the spread of the virus, Hubber noted.
“Think about it and give yourself a little time to get over it,” Hubber said, emphasizing the importance of staying home when sick. Other key basics include washing hands and covering your mouth when coughing.
Hubber is encouraging those within the high-risk group to contact the Prairie County Health Department or Clinic to schedule an appointment for the vaccination, tentatively set for the end of October.
There has been discussion that the H1N1 vaccination would include two shots, requiring a second visit, but Hubber said it isn’t yet clear what will be needed. “That’s what they were considering early on, now they’re saying possibly one.”
The H1N1 virus typically affects the younger population more than the older population.
Although the seasonal flu clinic has come and gone, flu shots and flu mists are still available.
For more information or to set an appointment for either vaccination please call the county health office at 635-2020. To read updates on the vaccination of the H1N1 virus visit http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/sick.htm.
Published Sept 23, 2009