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Archive for Wednesday, September 30, 2009

First wave of H1N1 vaccines expected in state next week

Vaccines for swine flu will be making their way into the state in the next few days. The first available vaccines will come in the form of a nasal mist.

September 30, 2009

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Information

Kansans with questions about swine flu can e-mail H1N1fluinfo@ kdheks.gov. Information is also available at kdheks.gov and by calling toll-free 877-427-7317 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Swine Flu Pandemic

An outbreak of H1N1 Swine Flu was reported in Mexico in April 2009. By the end of May, it had spread across the U.S., with all 50 states reporting cases.

State health officer discusses H1N1 flu vaccine

State health officer Dr. Jason Eberhart-Phillips discussed H1N1 flu vaccine coming to the Kansas. Enlarge video

— State health officials Wednesday announced that Kansas will start receiving the H1N1 vaccine next week to fight the swine flu.

“We in the United States are beginning to do something that no one in history has done before -- to stop a pandemic dead in its tracks with a vaccine,” said State Health Officer Dr. Jason Eberhart-Phillips.

But the first allocation to Kansas of 16,000 doses in nasal spray form is so far below what is needed that officials are recommending a ranking of groups to be vaccinated first.

“Today is really just the beginning of what is going to be a very long vaccination campaign,” Eberhart-Phillips said.

It will take months before there is enough vaccine to cover everyone who wants it, according to state and federal officials.

Still, state officials were touting the first order of vaccine as a milestone in battling the quick-spreading illness that has killed six in Kansas and been confirmed in 55 of the state’s 105 counties, including Douglas County. They expected the first doses to be given next Tuesday or Wednesday.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment will allocate the state’s share among the counties. The initial allocation will be based on 2008 census data of people up to 24 years old since the strain of flu seems to be hitting young people hardest.

Local health departments will get the vaccine and distribute it to doctors, hospitals, retail pharmacies and other providers.

Lisa Horn, communications coordinator for the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department, said health officials from schools, universities and businesses have been meeting several times a week recently to go over vaccination plans.

“It’s going to be a big one, and we definitely need all the help that we can get,” she said.

Under federal guidelines, the five groups who are to get the vaccine first are pregnant women, people who live with or care for children younger than 6 months, health care providers, people 6 months through 24 years old, and people between the ages of 25 and 64 who have chronic medical conditions.

Kansas officials have recommended further narrowing the first batch of the vaccine to health care workers and healthy children from 2 years old to 9 years old. Vaccinating health care workers will protect them and those who they care for, and the nasal-spray is appropriate for the 2-9 group, who will require a second dose, officials said.

Health officials emphasized that the H1N1 vaccine is safe and effective.

KDHE Secretary Roderick Bremby said as soon as the vaccine is available for his four children, he will have them vaccinated.

Comments

Onasis 5 years, 4 months ago

Is it just me or is anyone else a little skeptical of a brand new vaccine that nobody really knows any long term effects of? If the swine flu is really no worse than the regular flu, then what is the big scare all about? People with other health issues die from the regular flu too and if you notice, those who have died from swine flu have underlying health issues. I do not plan to get this vaccine, nor give it to my children.

Chrissy Neibarger 5 years, 4 months ago

My father has a good friend that is a virologist. She will NOT be getting this vaccine. Not enough data testing has been done because this is such a new virus, according to her thoughts.

Tex 5 years, 4 months ago

A primary concern: on average,36,000 people die in the USA every year from seasonal flu. According to flucount.org,there have been about 730 recorded deaths in the USA attributed to H1N1. With those odds, if you're going to get the flu, wouldn't you be hoping that it's H1N1? I asked our family doctor, who said she was skeptical about giving the vaccine to her children, why there was so much hype surrounding H1N1. She blamed the 24-hr. news cycle. Certainly that's part of it, but that doesn't fully explain the degree to which the federal government has been beating the drum, with Sec. Sebelius leading the band.

nut_case 5 years, 4 months ago

Tex - you're leaving out one important number - how many people have been exposed / infected. 36,000 people dead from seasonal flu out of 300 million exposed in the country? While H1N1 is relatively new - if only a couple million have been exposed, that 730 dead is still a higher percent.

From what I've read H1N1 doesn't seem to be much more deadly with proper care, but does seem to hit a bit harder than seasonal flu.

Boston_Corbett 5 years, 4 months ago

Fleeba: I believe you will find most other virologists of other minds: examples: http://www.virology.ws and http://www.twiv.tv

Some of your father's friend's thinking may be based on age. People born before '56-'58 seem to have some level of immune resistance based on similarity of H1 flu infections of the time.

It is unusual that this outbreak seems to be more prevalent in younger people.

And this flu is much more infectious than typical seasonal strains. Many more people will become infected this year.

The methodology used to manufacture this vaccine has been around a long time and is the same as normal seasonal flus. I have not heard of any well-known virologist who shares the opinion you expressed.

This flu is not the 1918 flu, but it is not to be taken lightly. It will increase the number of regular flu related illnesses and deaths this year.

I will be getting my shot. And I hate needles and do not normally get a flu shot.

Boston_Corbett 5 years, 4 months ago

Onasis (Anonymous) says… "Is it just me or is anyone else a little skeptical of a brand new vaccine that nobody really knows any long term effects of? If the swine flu is really no worse than the regular flu, then what is the big scare all about?"


I am puzzled at those who contend the novel influenza A (H1N1) is so "new and untested" as to not be trusted.

Each year in the summer, public health officials debate which strains should be included in that year's seasonal flu vaccine, so every year in essence is a "new" vaccine. The manufacturing methodology is all known and tested.

The only really thing "new" about this new strain is about the efficacy...i.e. what level of dosage is needed of this strain to produce the desired level of immunity. The testing for this was recently completed.

Protection of humans against seasonal influenza is generally believed to require a HI titer of 1:40 or more in hemagglutination inhibition (HI) tests. (resulting in a 50% reduction in infections). Recent testing of the US H1N1 vaccine in Australia of two differing dosage levels indicates the lower dosage level produces this desired titer target. http://www.virology.ws/2009/09/10/single-dose-of-2009-h1n1-vaccine-immunogenic-in-adults/

"then what is the big scare all about?":

The median age of persons with laboratory-confirmed infections in the United States is 12 years. The highest incidence of infection is among persons aged 5-24 years, and the lowest is in persons over 65 years of age. Similar findings have been reported in other countries. Comparison of the age distribution of hospitalized persons with laboratory-confirmed cases also shows a striking difference compared with seasonal influenza.

For that reason, people with children should strongly consider vaccination for H1N1 this year.

salad 5 years, 4 months ago

Glad the vaccine will be released next week. Sure hope my asthmatic 1st grader doesn't get H1N1 THIS week.

salad 5 years, 4 months ago

Onasis (Anonymous) says… "Is it just me or is anyone else a little skeptical of a brand new vaccine that nobody really knows any long term effects of?" Not just you. Lots of other scientifically illiterate, scared, ignorant people won't get it either.

"People with other health issues die from the regular flu too and if you notice, those who have died from swine flu have underlying health issues." Not true, dozens of people who were completely healthy with no chronic illnesses/conditions have died from H1N1, some right here in NE KS.

"I do not plan to get this vaccine, nor give it to my children." tard=you ....suffer the children.

headdoctor 5 years, 4 months ago

I recommend to the vaccination sites to keep their eyes open for someone crowding into line that resembles Maude Harmon with a fake ID wearing hospital garb and blue blockers.

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