More schools postpone swine flu vaccine clinics

By Andy Jenks - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - Henrico was expecting to start vaccinating students on Monday. Instead, the district became just the latest to scale back plans to give out the vaccine.

Carmen Sparhawk is finding it hard to relax these days. Her daughter, Logan, has type one diabetes, putting her in a top priority group for the flu shot. Problem is they can't seem to find one, anywhere.

"It was all of a sudden, we're out of it. Well, I never you knew you had it," said Carmen.

It was supposed to be easy...just get the shot at Logan's school, and be done with it. But when the school district suddenly postponed its student flu shot clinics, Carmen started calling everywhere, and she has the scribbles to prove it.

"None of them have it. None of them have it in the office and that's what baffles me," she said.

The problem is affecting lots of communities. Today, Henrico County postponed its student clinics, as have Chesterfield, Powhatan, and Colonial Heights. Richmond's are being scaled back, too.

"The vaccine, simply, is not coming off the assembly line, if you will, as fast as it needs to," said Mychael Dickerson, Henrico County Public Schools Spokesperson.

And according to the state health department, "It means it's going to take a little longer than we had hoped to do some activities." Schools and other clinics are left waiting until more vaccine arrives.

"Our plan is still in place. And when they say, we have it, we'll contact parents and get started with the same plan we had in place before," said Dickerson.

Until then, Carmen is spending fifty dollars a week on wipes and other sanitizers. Her family is taking every precaution it can, against the H1-N1 flu.

"By the grace of god, that she will make it through this. We will hang on until we can get it," said Carmen.

The vaccine may still be available at some doctor's offices, and at public health departments. But the advice is to call ahead and check, first.

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