News Release

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


Health Department announces H1N1 Flu Vaccination Clinics Schedule
19 clinics set for first week of November


(October 28, 2009) Like other local health departments across the country, the Health Department of Northwest Michigan has not received all of its H1N1 vaccine shipments, forcing public health officials to change their vaccination strategy to get the limited number of doses of vaccine out as quickly as possible to those who need it the most. With assistance from school districts, Emergency Operations Centers, law enforcement and EMS, and many, many volunteers, the Health Department has planned 19 clinics for the week of November 2--for the groups of people in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) vaccine priority groups.

The vaccination clinics initially planned during the school day in middle and high schools around Antrim, Charlevoix, Emmet, and Otsego counties are cancelled at this time.

The Health Department will be offering H1N1 flu vaccine for free to the CDC's vaccine priority groups. Officials expect long lines, as vaccination is on a first come/first served basis. Children and adolescents age 17 and under must be accompanied by an adult.

The clinic schedule is: Vaccine priority groups are groups of people at risk of developing complications from the flu. The CDC's vaccine priority groups are:

As H1N1 vaccine production increases, additional clinics will be planned, first for healthy adults age 24 to 64 and then to adults age 64 and older. Injectable vaccine production is currently lagging behind the other form of H1N1 vaccine, nasal flu mist. Because the majority of H1N1 vaccine the Health Department has received so far is nasal flu mist, injectable vaccine will be reserved at this time for people who cannot get the flu mist because it contains a live, though weakened, vaccine. (The flu mist does not contain preservatives, such as thimerosol, that are a concern for some parents.)

If you've recently had the flu, the CDC recommends an H1N1 vaccination unless you have laboratory confirmation of the H1N1 virus strain.

It is not too late to get vaccinated against H1N1. Influenza outbreaks are unpredictable; they can ebb and flow through communities and flu can return, even when to those areas that have already been hit hard with flu illness.

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. For additional information about the H1N1 virus or vaccination clinics, visit www.nwhealth.org or call 800-432-4121.


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