H1N1 Vaccine for 2-4 year-olds here
MAT-SU—The first vaccines for H1N1 arrived in the Mat-Su and will be dispensed next week, beginning Oct. 13, at the Mat-Su Public Health Center from 1 p.m. until 7 p.m. as doses are available.
The doses are in a nasal spray and are specifically for healthy 2-year-old through 4-year-old children. The vaccines are free beginning Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, from 1 p.m. to 7p.m. and on Friday 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. as vaccines remain available.
Please bring a shot record (immunization record) so health officials can evaluate whether your child can receive the vaccine. Children who have received an (MMR) measles, mumps, rubella ; a nasal seasonal flu vaccine; and/or a varicella vaccine in the last month may have to delay receiving the H1N1 nasal vaccine.
Children must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
Mat-Su Public Health Center is at 3223 E. Palmer-Wasilla Highway, #3. Phone: 352-6600.
A limited number of doses will be on hand and will be dispensed as available. However, more doses will be arriving.
Vaccinating priority groups first is the goal. The Alaska Department of Health & Social Services is distributing stocks to communities around the state as it receives them.
Mat-Su Borough's Emergency Manager Tom Smayda said more vaccines will continue to arrive in the coming weeks for those who want to receive it. The Borough expects to hold a mass vaccination clinics.
For parents who want their toddler to receive this nasal vaccine: two doses are required for children 9 and under. The second dose cannot be given sooner than about one month. If a child receives the nasal vaccine, with the second dose the child can receive either the nasal dose or a shot. Children 10 and older need only one dose of the vaccine.
The H1N1 vaccine is safe. It was made just as the seasonal flu vaccine was made but infused with the specific H1N1 strain.
If you believe you or your family already contracted H1N1 and wonder if a vaccine is needed, consider this: The immune system of you or your family may not have responded fully by producing enough antibodies to the virus. An H1N1 vaccine will protect you against the H1N1 virus. The Centers for Disease Control recommends getting an H1N1 vaccine unless you have had a lab-confirmed case of H1N1.
Please continue checking this site for vaccine availability. The Borough's present hotline also has a recording with information: 761-3790.
The State has a hotline: 1-888-9panflu and an informative web page: www.pandemicflu.alaska.gov