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County Receives Additional H1N1 Vaccines for High-Risk Groups

The Public Health Department schedules special community clinics to begin Thursday

The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department recently received additional doses of H1N1 vaccines.

The vaccine is targeted for individuals who are in the high-risk groups identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The department recently received 5,500 doses in multidose vials, 3,800 doses of intranasal vaccine and 700 pediatric, single-dose syringes. Only the pediatric doses are preservative-free vaccine. The number of vaccines is still not sufficient to vaccinate all members of the high-risk groups. Each group identified at highest risk will be able to access vaccine through a designated provider.

The high-risk groups are pregnant women; all children ages 6 months to 4 years; parents of infants up to 6 months old; hospital and other health-care workers; and children and young adults with substantial medical conditions.

» Pregnant women may obtain vaccine through their obstetricians or at one of the Public Health Department’s special community H1N1 vaccine clinics noted below. The name of each woman’s OB will be requested.

» Children age 6 months up to age 5 may receive a vaccine at one of the special community clinics. Verification of the child’s birth date will be requested.

» Parents of children up to 6 months old may obtain vaccine through their pediatrician or at one of the special community clinics. Verification of the child’s birth date will be requested.

» Hospital workers who have direct regular contact with sick patients will receive the vaccine at work as hospitals will receive vaccines for hospital health-care workers directly. Other hospital workers will be eligible to receive vaccines in the near future.

» Health-care workers in primary care outpatient settings who have direct regular contact with sick patients will receive vaccines at one of the special community clinics. Emergency medical services workers (EMTs and paramedics) must come with documentation of employment, such as in uniform or with a badge. Other health-care workers and health-care workers in residential settings will be eligible to receive vaccines during a future clinic.

» Children ages 5 through 24 with substantial medical conditions that impair respiratory and immune functions should go to their pediatrician or specialist physician to obtain the vaccine. Pediatricians and specialists will be provided the vaccine directly.

The special H1N1 community vaccine clinics for high-risk groups will be held as follows:

» Santa Barbara: 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday at the Earl Warren Showgrounds

» Santa Maria: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Santa Maria Public Health Clinic

» Lompoc: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Lompoc Public Health Clinic

» Santa Ynez Valley: 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Nov. 9 at the Veterans Hall

» Carpinteria: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 14 at the Veterans Hall

There is no charge for the vaccine. The health department reserves the right to decide which vaccine type to offer to an individual. The individual has the right to accept or decline the offered vaccine. The department can’t ensure that there will be a sufficient supply of vaccine to immunize all individuals who come to the clinics.

As more of the vaccine is received, additional clinics will be scheduled. Questions may be directed to the PHD H1N1 public hot line at 888.722.6358, or click here for more information.

— Susan Klein-Rothschild is a public information officer for the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department.

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