Area flu shot supply limited

CNJ staff

The first flu shots have arrived in Clovis and Portales and the State Department of Health is urging people in high-risk groups to get a shot soon.

But, area health care officials are saying that supplies are limited.

“We’ve only received 300,” Portales Health Office representative Carol Morgan said, “and I usually administer that many (flu shots) at the Peanut (Valley) Festival (in October).”

According to Morgan, she plans to contact the Department of Health to ask if more flu shots will be shipped. In the meantime, Morgan said children under the age of 5 and adults over 65 should get a flu shot. People with chronic conditions such as asthma, emphysema and cancer need a shot too, she said. Morgan said the shots are free, but individuals with Medicaid or Medicare should bring their cards.

Gayla Jacquess, nurse manager at the Curry Field Health Office, said her office also received 300 adult-dose flu shots. “We do expect to have more shipped,” Jacquess said.

The Department of Health has sent about 13,000 adult flu shots to public health offices and the department’s long-term care facilities, and has shipped nearly 20,000 flu shots for children to public health offices and private providers. It plans to ship 8,000 more adult flu shots throughout the state this week.

The department ordered 170,000 doses of the flu vaccine this year. Manufactures typically release flu shots in several shipments throughout the season, and have told state officials they expect to ship more flu shots later this month.

Public health offices offer shots to people in high-risk groups, people who lack health insurance and health care workers who could pass the illness to high-risk people.

Fast facts

Where to get a flu shot:
Portales Health Office
1515 W. First St.
Call 356-4453 for time and availability

Curry Field Health Office
1216 Cameo Dr.
Flu shots are administered from 8-11 a.m. and 1-3 p.m. Mondays
Call 763-4453 for information

Baxter-Curren Senior Center
8 a.m. to 11 a.m., Oct. 11
Anyone over the age of 50 or anyone over the age of 18 with a chronic condition

Who should get a flu shot:
People ages two to 64 who have chronic conditions such as asthma or other breathing problems, kidney disease, heart disease, diabetes, muscle or nerve disorders that can lead to breathing or swallowing problems and children on long-term aspirin therapy
Children ages six months to five years.
People ages 50 or older
Pregnant women
Health care workers who work directly with patients
Anyone who has contact with a child up to age five