Monday, November 02, 2009

Bubbles allowed in flu shot lines

You can list this one under the 'for goodness sake' category - or maybe it qualifies for 'stuck on stupid' status.

The Ohio Department of Health today issued a press release about what to bring with you to entertain your children while waiting in line for a flu shot. Bubbles are suggested.

Yes, you read that correctly - bubbles.

Additionally, we're supposed to remember to dress for the weather, wear comfortable shoes, wash our hands and cover our mouths when we cough.

Read it and weep - for common sense seems to have left us...


COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohioans seeking H1N1 vaccine may find themselves standing in long lines at clinics due to large amounts of people taking part in H1N1 clinics across the state. Ohio Department of Health Director Alvin D. Jackson, M.D., today urged Ohioans to be patient while standing in lines for H1N1 vaccination clinics and to bring items to help pass the time.

“We appreciate the patience that Ohioans are showing while waiting in line for their H1N1 vaccination,” Jackson said. “While it may be difficult to wait in line, especially with small children, it is worth it for protection against this flu virus.”

ODH recommends those attending an H1N1 vaccination clinic be prepared for the wait. Consider bringing the following:

• Toys, such as bubbles, battery-operated games or books
• A folding chair
• Healthy snacks
• Bottled water
• Tissues
• Comfortable shoes
• Hand sanitizer

It is also important for Ohioans to dress appropriately for weather conditions and take the following preventive measures to avoid spreading germs:

• Wash your hands frequently; alcohol-based hand sanitizers are effective if soap and water are not available.
• Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, or cough or sneeze into your elbow.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
• If you are sick, stay home until fever free for 24 hours without taking fever-reducing medication.

The vaccine is intended for high-risk individuals including health care workers and EMS workers who provide direct patient care; pregnant women; people who live with or care for children less than 6 months; all people 6 months to 24 years; and people 25 to 64 years with chronic medical conditions.

Local health department and hospitals may choose to vaccinate some subset of the above group depending on vaccine supply and the demographic makeup of the patients they serve.

For more information about H1N1, including a list of announced clinics, visit or contact the ODH H1N1 information line at 1-866-800-1404 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday.


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