More Flu Shots Expected - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

12/15/04

More Flu Shots Expected

Flu shots have been hard to come by this year. But some Chatham County residents have had a little relief. Lines formed outside the National Guard Armory early this afternoon as the health department gave flu shots to high-risk patients.

About 3,000 shots have been given out since Monday, but today was the first day it was open to the public. The past two days have been for people who have been on the waiting list.

People wasted no time getting in line and braving the cold for a while, because getting the shot was worth the wait. "I usually take a flu shot every year, and this year I was running behind," said Bratton Wright, waiting in line and dressed for the cold. "I come prepared as you can tell by the way I am dressed, I come to ready to sit outside for a mighty long time."

Chatham County offered thousands of flu shots to high-risk patients, opening the doors to people without an appointment this afternoon. Some didn't even have to leave their cars. "There's no place, absolutely no place like this in the US, or anywhere else, that you can drive up in your car and you're already cold and handicapped to start, and you get a flu shot sitting in your car," said recipient Vanessa Land.

While thousands of people already received flu shots this week, we have some good news. The Chatham County Health Department says it anticipates more are on the way. "We are expecting additional vaccine in tomorrow," said chief medical officer Dr. Diane Weems.

Once again it will go to high-risk patients first, and may then be offered to everyone else, depending on how many doses the county receives.

As for the people relieved to get the vaccine, they say now they will move on to other things. "Wonder what I can do, since I don't drink, I don't smoke, and I don't carouse around town," said Land. "Wait, I'll carouse around town."

To find out if the flu shots came in, call the Chatham County Health Department tomorrow at 356.2234. They are open from 8am-5pm and they are expecting a few thousand more to come in. The cost is $20, which Medicaid will reimburse.

Reported by: Kim Angelastro, kangelastro@wtoc.com

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