H1N1 vaccine for toddlers now available

Tue, 10/06/2009 - 3:13pm
By: Ben Nelms

Fayette County Health Dept. gets 400 doses of nasal spray for kids 2-4; vaccine free, but call first

The Fayette County Health Department has received a limited number of doses of nasal spray vaccine for the H1N1 flu to be administered only to healthy young children ages 2-4.

Walk-ins are welcome but parents are asked to call before they come to the office.

There is no appointment necessary to have the vaccine administered. Parents, however, should call the Fayette County Health Department at 770-305-5416 prior to arriving. The department is located at the Fayette County government complex at Stonewall Avenue and Ga. Highway 85 in Fayetteville.

District 4 Division of Public Health spokesperson Hayla Hall said Monday that the county has received 400 doses of the H1N1 nasal spray vaccine and that it has been designated for the 2-4-year age group that is considered to be vulnerable to the H1N1 influenza. There will be no charge for the vaccine, Hall said.

Hall stressed that vaccination guidelines advise that the children be in good health and free from egg allergies, asthma or long-term health problems, weakened immune systems, those receiving treatments containing aspirin or those with muscle, nerve or seizure disorders.

Hall said additional H1N1 nasal spray vaccine could be arriving in the county in coming weeks, although the specific timeframe for its arrival is currently unknown. Also currently unknown is the timeframe for the arrival of the H1N1 shot.

Whether as a nasal spray or by injection, the idea of taking the H1N1 vaccine continues to be a topic of conversation locally and nationwide. Not surprisingly, reporting agencies vary in the percentages of Americans who say they will or will not take the vaccine.

A study from the Harvard School of Public Health released Oct. 2 reported that 60 percent of adults surveyed said they would take the vaccine and 75 percent said they would have their children vaccinated.

Yet a Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center study a week earlier showed nearly the opposite, with 66 percent of those surveyed saying they would not take the vaccine and only 35 percent planned to have their children vaccinated.

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