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Flu Shots

Posted by john h on 10/08/04 at 12:12 (161159)

As you all read in the papers there will be a large shortage of flu vaccine this year. I checked the Wallgreen web page and found which stores would be giving the shots and date/time. I walked into a Wallgreens today and had my shot and there was no one in line at all. By the way they do have a nurse who goes from store to store. She said she had 150 avialable doses in her possession today and did not use them all. If you are Medicare elgible they are of course free. Not sure what the general public will pay but I think $20 unless your insurance covers the shot. I would not wait until the flu season kicks in as if we have a bad flu season there will be a panic to get the shots.

Re: Flu Shots

Buck T. on 10/08/04 at 14:04 (161169)

John: What's the web page?

Thanks, Buck T.

Re: Flu Shots

john h on 10/08/04 at 14:43 (161174)

http://www.walgreen.com

you have to mess around to find the link but it will show all Wallgreens in USA and dates and times they offer the shots. They generally are at each store about 1/2 a day. I got there 15 minutes before they closed and no one waiting.

Re: Flu Shots

Linda V on 10/08/04 at 19:03 (161187)

hi,
not for nothing ...but...given the shortage..are you in a high risk group for the flu? i think i would feel guilty taking a shot since i am not in a high risk group if it meant that others more needy might not get theirs. I say this, because i worked as a nurse giving out flu shots when the supply was short...and i had to beg, borrow, and steal from other facilities to make sure my frail elderly patients got theirs. no offense intended...just a thought.

Re: Flu Shots

john h on 10/09/04 at 10:58 (161210)

Linda: Walgreen made a public statement they are not going to be the Flu Police and will give the shot to ever shows up. Think about this: You are a 40 year old in decent health and go to whoever and are refused a flu shot. You later get the flu and die. You can bet the lawyers will be all over that. Many of our local family clinics are backing out of the flu shots altoghether for this very reason. When you refuse someone a shot you are suddenly at great risk. Perhaps 100,000 or more people die in the U.S. each year as a result of the flu. Certainly not all of these people are so called 'high risk' and some who do not get the shot will die. There was no problems getting shots in Little Rcok this week at various drug stores, Kroger, etc. They are given by nurses. Who employees them I do not know. I do not think they are employed by the outlets as I filled out a Medicare form for payment. When government gets involved in deciding who can and who want get medical care it is called rationing of health care and usually leads to problems and lawsuits. When you ration it is no easy decision. Who should get the vaccine a 40 year old healthy mom with 5 children or a 70 year old grandmother? You can make a strong argument either way. Just the fact the news is out there that there is a shortage is driving up the demand from people who otherwise do not get the flu shot anyway. Get your flu shot and do not feel guilty. You have as much right to good health as anyone. The shot you get may be one destined for a drug addict, a high risk smoker with emphysemia. or a murder convict in state prison with a comprismed immuune system. There is no sound way to really figure out who to give this vaccisne. Hopefully we will have a mild flu season or of course this years flu may be one the vaccine does not cover.

There are apparently only two manufactures of the flu vaccine in the world. There once was 27 but yes due to government intervention it became non profitable and they became very susptibale to lawsuits which ended up with only two surviving companies. I think it was in the 70's when we had a number of people die from flu shots. The companies were sued out of existence. It is a long tedious process making the flu vaccine. The virus is injected into individual chicken eggs and grown. They are already preparing next year's vaccine.

Re: Flu Shots

Linda V on 10/09/04 at 14:54 (161214)

john,
believe it or not...i never get a flu shot. even when i worked in busy, busy hospitals and was exposed to all kinds of risk. i hardly ever got sick then. i think i built up a huge immunity because of all my exposure. it is said that teachers also build up an immunity...otherwise they would ALWAYS have a cold. i never had a flu shot since the year the swine flu shot ended up with a lot of people with guillane-barre syndrome. scared the sox off me. so i take lots of vitamin c, drink juices,make chicken soup, and, most importantly wash my hands many, many times a day.
i believe i read where the type of strain to bother us in the usa starts in asia..and in january of each year they begin to make the vaccine for that strain and it takes till october for the process to be completed. its a shame that this country can't find a way to manufacture and protect our own people against the flu. billions of dollars for travel to mars, but let 36,000 die each year. go figure.

Re: Flu Shots

john h on 10/09/04 at 16:58 (161225)

Linda good thing you were never in the military. We had no choice. My military shot record looks as big as the novel War & Peace.

Re: Flu Shots

Kathy G on 10/10/04 at 09:15 (161233)

John,

This doesn't belong on the Treatment Board but that brings to mind my late father's story about being in the Army during WWII. There was one particularly rugged, huge guy in his outfit who fainted at the sight of a needle. Everyone knew it and each time they had to line up for shots, my dad said that they made sure that the biggest guys in the outfit were on either side of this fellow, to catch him when it was his turn to get his shot. My father said the meds knew of his problem and he couldn't understand why they didn't let the poor guy lie down when he got shots. Dad said if he'd ever been in active combat, this guy would have been the guy he wanted guarding his back, just so long as the enemy wasn't armed with syringes!

As for the flu shots, Linda is fortunate in that she never got the flu. Most first year teachers and healthcare workers catch everything in the book in their first career years until they build up immunity. If we haven't been exposed to the flu, we can't build up immunity.

I think that the flu shots are for people who are at high risk. I suspect that they will end up with a surplus of flu vaccine because so many people who used to get the shot, like me, won't do it this year. For as long as I can remember, perhaps since they've been available, I've gotten a flu shot. Were I get the flu, I'd be sick for a month or more, but it wouldn't be life threatening. I'm not technically high risk, I just have upper respiratory problems. If I get a simple cold, I end up with bronchitis. One of the positives of being older (I didn't say OLD!) is that I've had so many colds over the years, I don't get nearly as many as I used to.

Re: Flu Shots

john h on 10/10/04 at 10:15 (161237)

I have been in the shot line in the military where the techs were so profecient they could give you two shots in one arm at the same tiem. As a matter of fact you would get two shots in one arm and two in the other all at the same time. Being a pilot who flew world wide I was given a shot for almost everything that you could get and much more often than people receive them in civilian life. I have had at least 6 smallpox vaccinatiions. The flu shote that were given in the 50's really hurt and usually made you ill. Seems the needles were much larger at that time also. I have three shot record books still in my possesion. Most counries upon arrival actually looked at them along with your passport.

Re: Flu Shots

Rose on 10/11/04 at 19:48 (161304)

I am 60 but I am not going to get one this year as I feel it is only right to save if for those older than I am. My husband, who is 64 was denied getting a shot. So I will hope for the best.