News Release

Health Department of Northwest Michigan
serving Antrim, Charlevoix, Emmet, and Otsego Counties
Visit us at www.nwhealth.org


Registered Nurses: Please help Health Department with H1N1 flu vaccination clinics
Health Department plans to vaccinate thousands; mostly children, teens, and young adults


(October 15, 2009) The Health Department needs registered nurses--lots of them--to get H1N1 vaccine out quickly to the groups at high risk of developing complications from the highly contagious virus.

"We have grant funds from the state health department to pay RNs to give H1N1 vaccinations," said Pat Fralick, Director of Family & Community Health for the Health Department of Northwest Michigan. "We have literally dozens of flu shot clinics to staff--in virtually every community in Antrim, Charlevoix, Emmet, and Otsego counties. There is no way public health nurses can complete so many clinics in a short period of time without help."

Fralick said any registered nurses with licenses to practice in Michigan are welcome to submit an application for "Nurse Vaccinator", even if they are not currently employed. Because children six months and up are included in a vaccine priority group, RNs who have experience giving pediatric injections--or who are willing to learn--are especially needed.

"We have slots open during the day at school-based clinics in middle and high schools and later in the afternoon and evening for community clinics," she said. "Nurses will join a team with two to three public health nurses with extensive experience in mass vaccination clinics. We'll provide training and the nurses will work under our Medical Director's standing orders."

"Vaccination is the best protection against influenza, including H1N1. We're working fast to get our target groups--pregnant women, kids 6 months through 24 years, and adults up to age 64 with underlying medical conditions--their shots as quickly as possible," said Fralick. "Most people recover from H1N1 flu, but this virus can be quite serious in even healthy children, teens, and young adults. Nurses who help us will be providing an important, valuable service in their communities."

The Health Department of Northwest Michigan is mandated by the Michigan Public Health Code to promote wellness, prevent disease, provide quality healthcare, address health problems of vulnerable populations, and protect the environment for the residents and visitors of Antrim, Charlevoix, Emmet, and Otsego counties. To apply, registered nurses should complete an online employment application, available at www.nwhealth.org or download application and submit with resume to Fralick by fax, at 231-347-2861, or by email, at p.fralick@nwhealth.org.


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