Health Department urges people to be vaccinated
Or so, they said, in October.
But this year, with mild temperatures and the so-far mild influenza
season — at least when compared to the 2009-2010 H1N1 influenza scare
— it seems the crowds waiting to receive this year’s flu shot have not
And this has the St. Joseph County Health Department worried.
Thomas Felger, the physician who serves as the county health officer,
said concerns don’t seem to be as high this year about getting the
So far this flu season, the Centers for Disease Control report a
normal level of influenza across the country, but data show that about
3 percent of influenza A viruses found have been identified as the
As of Monday, no strains of the H1N1 virus have yet been found in
Indiana, according to the state health department’s weekly report.
But even if the H1N1 virus isn’t found locally, Health Department
officials still worry that the low number of flu vaccines given out
this year means that more people will become ill once the height of
flu season — usually in February and March — arrives.
“The Health Department’s main goal is to prevent illness throughout
the county,” reads a news release issued by the department this week.
“However, with the low level of Flu vaccine already given, the Health
Department is expecting more seriously ill citizens this flu season.”
To help prevent the spread of influenza, the Health Department is
continuing to officer vaccinations at its offices on the ninth floor
of County-City Building downtown. Vaccinations are available from 8:30
to 11:30 a.m. and 1 to 3:30 p.m., Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and
Vaccinations are also available at the Mishawaka office, in the County
Services Building, from 8:30 a.m. to noon and 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.
Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.
Vaccines cost $10 for children and $25 for adults, and can be billed
to Medicaid or Medicare Part B, or can be paid for with cash, credit
Staff writer Dave Stephens: