Many people not getting swine flu vaccine, clinic owner says - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Many people not getting swine flu vaccine, clinic owner says

By Chip Washington - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - The H1N1/Swine Flu vaccine, in the form of FluMist, is now available to residents of Memphis who fall under a priority status.  Though many people have been waiting for the vaccine to arrive, healthcare officials say the response has been tepid at best.

"It's been very slow," said Kimberly Gray, owner of the Shot Nurse Clinic in Memphis. "We've expected quite a few people to show up. There's been a lot of interest in the vaccine, but it seems like the Swine Flu mist has gotten a bad rap."

According to Gray, the FluMist form of the vaccine has been available since Monday, but only 200 people have showed up to receive it.

"I think they think its really new and they're afraid of it, but the flu vaccination every year is new," Gray said.

Amy Ervin, who had her sons vaccinated, said she not understand why more people aren't doing the same.

"Vaccine safety, from what I've read and learned, is really good," she said. "We've had a lot of friends whose children have had this."

Memphian Wakefield Gordon said he is not eligible to receive the vaccine as of yet, but he will take it when he is.

"Why get sick if you've got a vaccination you can take that keeps you from getting sick?" he asked.

Healthcare officials say plenty of doses of the FluMist vaccine are available. The injectable vaccine should be available in about two weeks.

The Memphis and Shelby County Health Department is offering the H1N1 vaccine free of charge to the following individuals:

  • healthy, non-pregnant people between the ages of 2 and 24 years old
  • people ages 25-49 who live with a child less than six-months-old
  • people ages 25-49 who work in the healthcare field, or who work as emergency response personnel

The H1N1 vaccine is available for qualified individuals at the following locations:

  • Immunization Clinic, 814 Jefferson. Clinic Hours: 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday-Friday. Phone: 901-544-7711
  • Millington Clinic, 8225 Highway 51. Clinic Hours: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. Phone: 901-873-4433
  • Shelby Crossing Clinic, 6170 Macon Road. Clinic Hours: 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. Phone: 901-372-7581
  • Southland Mall Clinic, 1278 Southland Mall, Shelby Drive/Highway 51. Clinic Hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday & on 2nd and 4th Saturdays from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and 2nd and 4th Mondays from 5-6:30 p.m. Phone: 901-346-0081

Copyright 2009 WMC-TV. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Powered by Frankly