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Shot in the arm

More than 1,300 Islanders took advantage of a $10 “drive-through” flu shot from the Department of Health.

The Flu Express travelled to St George's, Warwick, Sandys and Hamilton earlier this month to give people aged ten and above a convenient way to get vaccinated.

Chief Medical Officer Cheryl Peek-Ball said she was encouraged by the success of the initiative.

“I ... hope it is a sign that our residents are taking seriously the possible complications that can stem from contracting the flu, particularly for our seniors and persons with chronic health problems,” she said.

“I would urge the rest of the public to follow suit in a timely fashion, while we are at the very beginning of flu season. Protecting yourself early in the season is ideal.”

Dr Peek-Ball said influenza was a highly contagious viral infection which could be dangerous, and even life-threatening, for some.

“The influenza vaccine is a safe and effective protection against influenza. Influenza illness can be serious for very young children, seniors and persons with chronic health problems and pregnant women, which is why it is important to prevent its occurrence especially in these populations.

“It is also important for healthy adults who are in close contact with children and the elderly to be vaccinated to reduce time lost from work and to protect seniors, infants and children.

“With the increased uptake of the vaccine each year, Bermuda has seen a decline in the incidence of influenza in the community.”

She added that the chance of contracting flu and other upper respiratory infections could be reduced by frequent and thorough hand washing, covering coughs and sneezes and avoiding crowded places.

Those who didn't take advantage of the Flu Express can still get the flu vaccine from the Department of Health at the following locations and times:

* Hamilton Health Centre ground floor, Mondays to Fridays, 8.30am to 11.30am and Wednesdays 2pm to 4pm;

* Somerset Health Centre, Tuesdays, 2pm to 4pm; and

* St George's Health Centre, Fridays, 2pm to 4pm.

Most private physicians will also be able to administer the shot.


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Published October 30, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated October 30, 2013 at 12:19 am)

Shot in the arm

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