Health Team

Flooding knocks out vaccine stores as flu season nears

Posted October 25, 2016

Hurricane Matthew caused many deaths in North Carolina and left many people without a way to go back to their home or business.

Many medical offices lost power during the storm, resulting in the loss of thousands of dollars of medicines and vaccines while some flu shot clinics had to be delayed.

Here's what patients need to know about the proper storage and administration of the flu vaccine:

–The vaccine has to be stored between 2 and 8 degrees Celsius. Any variation of this temperature for four hours or more can affect the viability of the vaccine.

–When drawing up the vaccine, the Centers for Disease Control recommends the person who delivers the vaccine should also be the one to draw it up. If drawing up from a multi-dose vial, the vaccine should not be stored in the syringe but rather used at the time of delivery.

–At the time of the vaccination, choose to sit, especially if you are nervous. Wear a loose garment for easy access to your arm. A bandage is optional.

–The CDC recommends that everyone over the age of 6 months get the vaccine. If you have questions, be sure to ask the provider at the time the vaccine is to be delivered.

There has already been one flu related death in North Carolina, so public health officials are urging people to get the vaccine as soon as possible.

Once you get the vaccine, it takes two weeks for it to become effective.


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