November 2, 2009 9:49:00 AM
Allen Baswell - firstname.lastname@example.org
Area residents were in health departments early this morning to get vaccinated against the H1N1 swine flu.
Dosages of the vaccine for swine flu became available this morning at health departments throughout the state.
Lowndes County Health Department Spokeswoman Brenda Martin said this morning they have 600 doses available, and residents -- she did not specify how many -- already had arrived to get the vaccine.
The vaccine is available for pregnant women, children ages 6 months to 4 years and those sharing a home with or providing care for infants.
"That is what we are telling people who come to the clinic because that is our instructions from the State Department of Health," Martin said.
Gay Willcutt, a nurse with the Oktibbeha County Health Department, said they have 300 doses of the vaccine.
Those who getting the vaccine need to have their Social Security number with them, said Martin.
"If they are on Medicare or Medicaid, or the CHIP (Child Health Insurance Plan), they need to bring their card," she said.
Officials with health departments in Clay, Monroe and Noxubee counties did not have specific numbers of the amount of the H1N1 vaccine distributed to them, but the Mississippi State Department of Health said the vaccine is being distributed according to the county''s population needs, and the amounts change as it becomes more available.
For those getting the vaccine in Lowndes County, Martin said the health department is open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
"We stop seeing patients at 4 p.m.," she said.
The Oktibbeha County Health Department is open Monday-Friday from 8-5 p.m.
"They need to come before 3," Willcutt said.
Diane Clark, a coordinating nurse with the Monroe County Health Department in Amory, said the Amory clinic is open Monday-Thursday from 8-11 a.m. and 1-4 p.m. The Aberdeen clinic is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday at the same times.
"If people need the vaccine on Wednesdays, they can come to Amory, If they need it on Friday, they need to come to Aberdeen," she said.
The Clay County Health Department is open Monday-Friday from 8-11 a.m., and 1-4 p.m. The Noxubee County Health Department is open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Allen Baswell is a former staff reporter for The Dispatch