Swine Flu Vaccine Distribution Plans Differ in Each County in Mid-Michigan

By: Jennifer Dowling Email
By: Jennifer Dowling Email

When the H1N1 or Swine Flu vaccine arrives in mid-October, East Lansing High School will be on the front lines of the distribution. East Lansing Public Schools Director of Human Resources Kelley Peatross says the school is a designated site to distribute the vaccine for their students and then the public.

Ingham County Health Officials say right now, they're planning to vaccinate at schools the first week in November. Christine Hendrickson, Health Educator-Emergency Preparedness, says, "We're finalizing our plan, thus far, what we're looking to do is to go out to different parts of the counties to various schools and hold mass immunization clinics at those schools."
Hendrickson says,, "We're not looking to go to every school...For example, if we were to go to Williamston, maybe we would grab the Williamston schools and maybe because of our proximity to Webberville that we also pick up some of the Webberville schools as well...we're still working that out."

The county says it's still working out the exact dates and locations where the vaccine will be distributed at the schools. Health officials say they will know more in the coming days and weeks. Hendrickson says, "We're finalizing with the schools and finalizing with the dates we would like to come."

Not all counties plan to vaccinate at the schools. In Clinton County, Mid-Michigan District Health Department Health Officer Kim Singh says they are planning a 12-hour countywide clinic in Saint Johns. In Eaton County, Barry-Eaton District Health Department Medical Director Robert Schirmer says they are encouraging everyone to see their health care provider for their shots first. They are also planning for mass clinics at their seasonal flu clinic locations. He says those will be at the same clinics where people get flu shots every year. That includes a church outside of Charlotte.

Jackson County Health Department Director of Personal and Prevention Health Services Mary Ricciardello says their goal is to have a school-based community clinic in each district. She says the county will also hold Swine Flu H1N1vaccine clinics at the same places where they give out the seasonal flu vaccine every year.

James McCurtis, a spokesperson for the Department of Community Health says, "We're leaving a lot of those plans up to the local health departments...where they want us to send their amount to...the different doctor's offices"

Meanwhile Peatross says on vaccination day, the East Lansing High School plans to vaccinate high school students in the morning, middle school students in the afternoon after they are brought in by bus, and elementary students in the evening. She says the public will then be welcome.

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  • by Robin on Sep 23, 2009 at 07:31 AM
    Right, and when your kid gets sick, you will blame the government for not stressing the importance of the vaccine. I am not saying you should blindly go forth, but when the smallpox vaccine came out, I don't think people were dragging their feet and asking what the long term ramifications were. You couldn't get it to them fast enough. And now? No more smallpox. And I have to believe we know a little more about vaccines now than we did then. H1N1 is no smallpox, but it is a pandemic.
  • by Kelly Location: Lansing on Sep 22, 2009 at 08:53 PM
    Glad to hear it!
  • by sandy Location: jackson on Sep 22, 2009 at 08:16 AM
    Thank you Kelly, and my family will not be guinea pigs for the government
  • by Kelly Location: Lansing on Sep 22, 2009 at 06:54 AM
    No, Sandy, this vaccine is not mandatory. No vaccines are mandatory. As for research, you are correct: there has been almost none. As GlaxoSmithKline stated: "Clinical trials will be limited, due to the need to provide the vaccine to governments as quickly as possible. Additional studies will therefore be required and conducted after the vaccine is made available." In other words, anyone foolish to give this to their children is making their kid(s) into unpaid human trial subjects.
  • by sandy Location: jackson on Sep 21, 2009 at 06:21 PM
    Is the government making this vaccine mandatory in schools, for I really don't think they did enough research on all the side effects for my family to receive this vaccine .This is just my opinion.
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