December 22, 2009 – All San Diego County residents are now eligible to receive the H1N1 vaccine, which previously had been administered only to those deemed at the highest risk of becoming infected by the virus.
The change follows a decline in demand from high-risk groups amid a steady increase in the local supply of the H1N1 vaccine, according to the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA).
“We have been closely monitoring the demand for H1N1 vaccine and have seen a decline in interest from the primary groups at our public health centers and in the community,” said Dr. Wilma Wooten, the County’s Public Health Officer.
“While there is not an unlimited supply of vaccine available, with the decline in priority groups’ interest and increased supplies available, vaccinations are now open to non-priority groups who want protection against the H1N1 virus,” she added.
Previously, the H1N1 vaccine was only being offered to those in high- risk categories, including children, adults with chronic medical conditions and caretakers of infants.
According to Wooten, it’s estimated that about half of the 1.7 million San Diego County residents in the high-risk categories have already been vaccinated.
Residents were encouraged to contact their doctors to get the H1N1 vaccine. Those without a doctor or whose physicians don’t have the vaccine can get it at the County’s seven public health clinics, according to the HHSA.
To date, 833,090 doses of the H1N1 vaccine have arrived in the region and another 88,900 doses are expected in the next two weeks, according to the HHSA. About 12,000 doses are available at the County’s public health clinics.
The H1N1 vaccine is given in either a nasal spray or a shot. In general, nasal spray is not given to people with certain ongoing medical problems.
Where to Get Your H1N1 Flu Vaccine
The majority of vaccine in San Diego County will be distributed directly to medical providers who see patients in the priority groups. Please contact your medical provider about getting the H1N1 flu vaccine if you are in one of the high risk groups. If your medical provider does not have vaccine, or you do not have a regular medical provider, please click on one of the links below to get details of how you, or your child, may get vaccinated.
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