Seasonal flu shots underway, H1N1 vaccine to come, local health officials sayMore than 500 health care workers and volunteers at Woodwinds Health Campus received their seasonal flu shots Friday at the hospital, which is a few weeks earlier than normal.
By: Hank Long, Woodbury Bulletin
More than 500 health care workers and volunteers at Woodwinds Health Campus received their seasonal flu shots Friday at the hospital, which is a few weeks earlier than normal.
Generally, hospitals don’t distribute influenza vaccines until later in October, but in anticipation of the arrival of the first batch of the HINI vaccine many hospitals conducted their seasonal flu shot days earlier this fall, said Debbie Hulbert, director of employee occupational health for HealthEast, which runs Woodwinds Health Campus.
“It’s really a patient safety issue, to help protect our patients and staff so they are not spreading (the flu) to patients,” Hulbert said.
The Minnesota Department of Health announced last week that it would be distributing the H1N1 vaccine to health care providers later this month in anticipation of a second wave of the virus that concerned health officials across the world earlier this year.
“The (MDH) is controlling the flow of the vaccine and we anticipate we will start seeing the flow from them probably around the next 10 days,” said Dean Huska, a pharmacist with HealthEast.
The vaccine will be made available to the general populace with a priority given to health care and emergency medical services personnel, pregnant women, people who live with or care for children younger than six months of age, children and young adults and people with chronic health problems or compromised immune systems.
For more information on the H1N1 vaccine go to www.health.state.mn.us and click on the “Seasonal and H1N1 Influenza Information” link.