The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, November 13, 2009

BOH offers vaccines on Monday for those at highest risk of H1N1

The Carlisle Board of Health (BOH) has received an initial shipment of 100 doses of H1N1 vaccine and has scheduled a limited vaccination clinic for high-risk residents, to be held on Monday, November 16, by appointment only. When more vaccine is available, the BOH plans to hold larger clinics for children between five and 18 years old.

On Tuesday, parents of children at the Carlisle School received an email from the BOH describing the clinic. The BOH considers the following individuals at high-risk of H1N1:

• Children between the ages of five and 18 who have an underlying medical condition that puts them at higher risk for respiratory illness

• Pregnant women

• Household contacts or care givers of infants younger than six months of age

• Health care and emergency medical personnel

Anyone eligible and interested in the vaccine must call the BOH at 1-978-369-0283 for an appointment. The vaccinations will be by injection. BOH member Bill Risso says that if the demand from high-risk residents exceeds the initial supply, a list of names will be kept and people will be contacted by the BOH once additional doses arrive.

BOH Agent Linda Fantasia said the BOH and Carlisle Medical Reserve Corps are organizing the series of H1N1 vaccination clinics using federal Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines to identify groups at highest risk from H1N1. The BOH has received only 10% of the total request in the first shipment and expects the rest of the order to arrive in the coming weeks. “The state is assuring a steady distribution.” Fantasia added, “We’re going to get as much as we can out to the community as fast as we can.”

The vaccine was purchased by the federal government and is being distributed to the communities free of charge. Information on other public flu clinics is available at: http://flu.masspro.org. As of last week, the state DPH had received and distributed 660,000 doses of H1N1 vaccine, out of the 3.5 million total anticipated.

Fantasia said that the BOH is pleased with the number of residents who are signing up to help through the volunteer Medical Reserve Corp. Roughly 50 residents have signed up, to serve in both medical and non-medical roles. She said that there will be at least four doctor and nurse volunteers to staff the first small clinic. Depending on scheduling and who is available, she said the BOH may still need to hire contractors to help with a larger clinic. ∆


© 2009 The Carlisle Mosquito