The Texas Department of State Health Services has provided a limited quantity of vaccine for the H1N1 influenza strain to our county. Those at greatest risk for complications of this type of influenza are children (infants through adolescents), young adults (18 to 25 years-old), pregnant women, and middle-aged adults who have health issues (asthma or other lung disease, diabetes or other diseases that cause compromised immunity). People who are over 65-years-old are not at as great a risk – it seems that folks in this age range have some natural immunity to the H1N1 virus.
The vaccine is available for individuals older than 6 months of age. To protect infants younger than 6-months-old it is recommended that household contacts and people who work with these young infants receive the H1N1 vaccine to reduce their risk of exposure.
Children under 10-years-old who receive the vaccine will need a second dose at least one month later. The vaccine produces stronger immunity in people older than 10 years old so they do not need the second dose.
EMS workers, fire-fighters, nurses and nurses aides are encouraged to get the vaccine as well.
The vaccine is available at the Hoerster Clinic during regular office hours Monday through Friday. There is a $10.00 administration fee for those whose insurance does not cover the cost of vaccine administration, but that fee will be waived if a person wants the vaccine and cannot afford to pay.