H1N1 vaccine available in Johnson County - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

H1N1 vaccine available in Johnson County

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) - Johnson County Public Health will begin offering H1N1 influenza vaccine to priority groups identified below beginning Wednesday, November 4. Clinics will be held at the Johnson County Health and Human Services Building located at 855 S. Dubuque Street in Iowa City. Clinics will be available by appointment only from 1pm - 3 pm and then again from 5 pm - 7 pm.

"We still only have a limited supply of vaccine, so we are targeting the highest priority groups and will only have limited times for the clinics," said Doug Beardsley, Director. "We are still several weeks away from being able to expand the list of those eligible to receive the vaccine, but we're genuinely excited to be starting these clinics."

In order to control crowds and have an orderly flow during clinics, vaccine will be provided by
appointment only. Only those in the highest priority groups are eligible to receive vaccine at this
time. Those include:
• Health care workers and emergency response personnel who have direct contact with
patients or infectious materials;
• Persons who live with or provide care for infants less than 6 months;
• Children 6 months - 4 years of age; and
• Pregnant women.

Some private providers have been given vaccine for their priority group patients. Pregnant women and parents should check with their OB or pediatrician for the vaccine before scheduling an appointment at the Johnson County Public Health clinic.

To make an appointment, call Johnson County Public Health at 319-356-6038. There is no charge for the vaccine. Please arrive at your scheduled appointment time in order to avoid lines and waiting.

"We have both the nasal spray and injectable forms of the vaccine. However, some people, such as those with chronic medical conditions or children younger than 2, can only receive the injectable vaccine," explained Beardsley. "We have heard some concerns from folks about the nasal spray because it is a live vaccine. The nasal spray form of flu vaccine has been in use for the past 6 years. It has been shown to be safe and very effective and is even recommended for nursing mothers. It is certainly less traumatic for children."

Because of the limited amount of vaccine available, those who are eligible for the nasal spray will not be offered the injection because some high risk persons can not receive the nasal spray.

"I would encourage anyone with questions to go to www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu and review the materials on vaccines," said Beardsley.

Online Producer: Jason Mortvedt

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