SNOHOMISH COUNTY—Despite assurances from manufacturers that flu vaccine would arrive on schedule this year, Snohomish Health District has not received the promised shipment on time for mid-October vaccinations. The Health District expects to receive enough flu vaccine to protect all who wish to be immunized, but shipments will arrive incrementally from October through December. The first influenza cases usually appear in December and peak in January or February.
“At the moment, we ask that high-risk persons please postpone their visit to us until the end of October and call first before coming in,” said Stacy Kiyasu, Clinic Manager at the Health District. “We certainly hope that our vaccine supply is en route, but until we actually see the crate delivered, we have to face the possibility that our on-hand supply could be depleted before another shipment arrives,” she said.
Priority for flu shots will be given to:
- Persons age 65 or over
- Residents of nursing homes and other chronic-care facilities
- Persons of any age with chronic disease of the lungs, heart or circulatory system, including children with asthma
- Persons of any age with chronic conditions requiring regular medical follow-up including diabetes, kidney disease, hemoglobin disorders, or an immune system suppressed by disease or treatment
- Children age 6 months to 18 years receiving long-term aspirin therapy (because of risk of Reyes Syndrome)
- Women who will be in the second or third trimester of pregnancy during flu season
Some high-risk adults and children also should be vaccinated with pneumococcal vaccine to protect against serious infections such as pneumonia and meningitis.
Until vaccine supply is more plentiful, flu shots will be deferred for health care professionals, employees of nursing homes and chronic care facilities, providers of home care and household members of persons who meet one or more of the high-risk criteria. Influenza vaccination for other persons should be delayed until— at the earliest— mid-November to ensure high-risk persons and their caretakers are immunized first.
Main Clinic hours are by appointment on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Monday and Wednesday by appointment from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., and walk-in from 1-5:30 p.m. The Main Clinic address is 3020 Rucker Ave., Suite 108, Everett. Call 425.339.5220 to make appointments.
South County Clinic hours are by appointment on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday by appointment from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., and walk-in from 1-5:30 p.m. The South County Clinic address is 6101 200 th St. SW, Suite 100, Lynnwood. Call 425 775-3522 to schedule an appointment.
The fee per flu immunization is $15, and a sliding fee scale is available. The Health District accepts Medicare as primary coverage and medical coupons. Call either Snohomish Health District clinic for more information about vaccinations.
Established in 1959, the Snohomish Health District works to improve the health of individuals, families and communities through disease prevention, health promotion, and protection from environmental threats. Find more information about the Health District at www.snohd.org.