More flu shots available
Vaccines open to qualifying children
Flu vaccines for qualifying children are now available at the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department, 200 Maine St. in Lawrence. The clinic is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.
The qualified children's flu vaccine is $10, but no one will be denied service because of inability to pay.
Children qualify by fitting into one of the Center for Disease Control's high priority groups as well as by meeting federal guidelines.
The CDC considers high priority groups those children who are:
¢ 6 to 23 months old.
¢ 24 months old to 18 years old and have an underlying chronic medical condition.
¢ 6 months to 18 years old on chronic aspirin therapy.
¢ 24 months old to 18 years old who are in close contact with a child younger than 6 months old.
The federal guidelines require such children also:
¢ Be enrolled in Medicaid or Healthwave health insurance programs.
¢ Have health insurance that does not cover the cost of flu shots or has a co-pay/deductible that makes the flu shot too expensive
¢ Have no health insurance
¢ Be of Native American or Native Alaskan decent.
The health department acquired 150 doses of the vaccine through a federally-funded program. Doses were made available Thursday. The department also received enough doses that Wednesday it began vaccinating people living in licensed assisted living facilities and nursing homes.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is directing more vaccines to Douglas County, although KDHE has to take into account other counties' requests. Distribution of flu vaccines continues through January.
The Douglas County Health Department doesn't have a specific timetable on when additional vaccine will be available locally, but the department encourages county residents to check periodically by calling 843-0721.