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Free Drive-Thru Flu Clinic at SVMHS

SALINAS, CA, January 15, 2014- Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System (SVMHS)is partnering with Monterey County Health Department to make sure everyone in the community has easy access to the flu vaccine. SVMHS will host a drive-thru community flu clinic on Saturday to administer hundreds of doses of the flu vaccine to adults, children and infants.

“We need to protect families in our community against this potentially deadly threat,” says Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System president/CEO Pete Delgado. “It’s important to work together to vaccinate as many people as possible, and our nursing staff at Salinas Valley Memorial is volunteering to act immediately.”

The Monterey County Health Department is contributing approximately 700 doses of state funded flu vaccine to the community clinic, including approximately 300 doses of Flumist vaccine ideally suited for children. SVMHS has mobilized nursing and other staff to host and facilitate the drive-thru vaccination event. The free clinic comes as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes 35 states are reporting widespread illness due to the flu, up from 25 in the previous week.

“The flu season is peaking and can last through March and even into April,” says SVMHS Infection Control Manager Debra Johnson. “It is not too late to get vaccinated and it is the best way to protect against the flu strains circulating this season.”

Johnson says since mid November, 55 people have come to the Emergency Department at Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital with flu symptoms. Of those she says 8 were admitted to the hospital, mostly for overnight stays to bring body fluids into a normal range. Of those 8, three with severe flu symptoms were admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for treatment.

SVMHS and Monterey County Health Department are urging families who have not received the vaccine due to cost or access to take advantage of this free community event. Patients can walk-up or stay in their vehicle and drive thru to receive the vaccine. Minimal paperwork is required.

What: Free Drive-thru Community Flu Vaccination Clinic

Where: Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System, 450 E. Romie Lane, Salinas

When: Saturday, January 18th

Time: 11am – 2pm

For more information please call Health Promotion at 831-759-1890 or visit www.svmh.com/flu  Media requesting interviews to publicize or cover the event can contact Karina Rusk 831-759-1843 or krusk@svmh.com


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