Wiregrass: Second round of H1N1 vaccine clinics

Posted by: Melissa Johnson - bio | email

Dothan, AL (WSFA) - After receiving a second shipment of vaccines, Health Departments across the Wiregrass began a second round of H1N1 vaccination clinics.

But this time, they have expanded the priority group.

Renda Houston, who got her shot today, says she came because she knows it's what health experts advise.

Houston said, “I think everybody should take it.  They wouldn't be offering it if it wasn't something we need."

But not everyone feels the same way.  Jennifer Kauffman, who works in the health care field, said, “I'm not scared.  I keep my hands away from above my neck, and I feel like I'm pretty safe."

Richard Reid agrees.  “I don't really plan on getting it.  I'm old and set in my ways, and I don't run to the hospital every time somebody squeals."

Health officials say, it's still a virus folks should take seriously.

Sandra Sanders, nurse manager for the Houston County Heath Department said, “It's still a real danger.  We're still having people end up in the hospital very sick, and we're still having deaths.”

That's why she hopes those in the community, especially the high risks groups, take advantage of the free vaccines.

This time, a new group has been added to the priority list, adults ages 25-64 with pre-existing health problems. 

Health officials say, they'll keep expanding that group once more vaccines become available.

Emille Pride is in that newly expanded risk group.  She said, “I'm 62 and I have asthma.  I just don't want to be caught."

But for Renda Houston, getting the vaccine isn't just for her benefit.

She said, “It's to keep the spread of it down, so that we don't have to worry for our grand kids, great-grand kids and our kids."

So far, more than 22 million Americans have come down with H1N1 since April.

And Sanders says there is a lot more of H1N1 still out there.

Houston County and all public schools in Alabama will begin administering the vaccines to schools beginning November 30th.
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