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Clinic boosts H1N1 vaccinations
Ugenio Ochoa rolled up his sleeve and took a shot of the H1N1 vaccine offered at a clinic Thursday in Turlock. The county public health department has several more free clinics scheduled over the next few weeks. - photo by SABRA STAFFORD / The Journal

H1N1 Free Clinic Schedule

Date        Location
Jan. 21        Riverbank Community Center
                3600 Santa Fe St.

Jan. 26        Newman FDES Hall
                1361 R. Street

Jan. 28        Ceres Community Center
                2701 4th St.

Feb. 2        Salida Library
                4835 Sisk Road

Feb. 4        King Kennedy Center
                601 S. Martin Luther King Dr.

Starting Tuesday, the H1N1 flu vaccine clinic will open at the public health office at 830 Scenic Dr. Ste. C, in Modesto. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Wednesdays; 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Thursdays; and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fridays.

In the effort to keep another wave of H1N1 influenza illnesses from sweeping through Stanislaus County, the public health department held their second vaccination clinic Thursday in Turlock.
The Stanislaus County Health Services Agency sponsored clinic vaccinated 1,531 people during the six hours of operation said Nancy Fisher, the director of nursing and assistant director at the health services agency. The highest percentage of people coming in for the vaccine shot were adults between the ages of 25 to 49 years old, who had not been able to get the shot earlier because of limited vaccine supplies.
The vaccine supply shortage that had previously plagued public health departments across the country has waned. Fisher said there is no longer any reason to be concerned about the amount of vaccine in Stanislaus County and that if a resident wants the vaccine they can get it at one of the five upcoming free clinics or at the walk-in clinic at the Scenic Drive office in Modesto.
“With increased shipments, all community members can now receive vaccine from their health care providers, at our mass vaccination clinics, and other vaccine providers,” Fisher said.
The health department is hoping to vaccinate as many people as possible during the next few clinics to ward off another spike in H1N1-related illnesses. Since first appearing in the United States in April, the H1N1 virus has hospitalized 3,502 people in California and been the cause of death for 470 people, according to the latest figures from the state health department. In Stanislaus County there have been 14 deaths and 190 hospitalizations.
“Traditionally in Stanislaus County, we see an increase in flu cases in February and March and we’re hoping that through the vaccination clinics we can avoid seeing another bump in H1N1,” Fisher said.
Fisher’s message of being better safe than sorry resounded with Ugenio Ochoa. The 38-year-old Keyes resident came to the clinic with his family to get the vaccinations.
“I think it’s a good idea to have it,” Ochoa said. “Everyone should get it to be protected.”
Residents wishing to receive vaccine will need to provide proof of Stanislaus County address at the vaccination clinic. The public should anticipate waiting in line, especially earlier in the day, so wearing warm, weather appropriate clothes and comfortable shoes is recommended. Bringing snacks and water for those who are medically in need is also recommended. Layering warmer, long sleeved shirts over a short sleeve shirt will make it easier for nursing staff to administer the vaccine in the upper arm area. The vaccine is meant for those 6 months and older. For more information call 558-8872.
To contact Sabra Stafford, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2002.