Influenza Vaccine Concerns
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Concerns over the swine flu have officials scrambling to get people vaccinated. Better teamed up with Parents Magazine to answer questions from real parents. The answers may surprise you.


Audra Lowe: The typical flu season as we all know is December to March, but concerns over the Swine Flu have health officials scrambling right now to get people vaccinated. So Rhiannon in teamed up Parents magazine and she has got some important information that you need to know to keep your family safe. Rhiannon Ally: The way the flu virus is spread is through tiny droplets. Those droplets can remain on any surface for up to eight hours. So if you or your children touched the counter and then touch your face you can get sick. Now the FDA has approved a new vaccine for the H1N1virus. So we asked real parents, their concerns over that vaccine and got the answer. Some of them may surprise you? Linda Capasso: My number one question would be who is at risk? Dana Points: Children and pregnant women are the top groups of people that are at the top of priority list for the vaccine. What's unusual about this flu is that children between 5-24 24s aren't children, but that age range is really at the highest risk. It's not elderly people. Debra Dumas: Do kids, young kids need to get a regular flu shot as well as the H1N1 flu shot? Dana Points: Kids are supposed to be vaccinated for both types of influence if they are older than six months. So if you are the parent of an infant, it's very important for you to be vaccinated. Jim Fishman: Is it truly necessary and also if it is give it to the people who deserve it? Dana Points: Now we are urging parents very strongly to take advantage of the flu vaccine. You should get your child into the pediatrician to get their regular flu vaccine as soon as possible, because then you are going to have to come back and get the H1 though, H1 vaccine. Jim Fishman: What are the side effects? Dana Points: Yeah they really are not concerned if there is any more safety risk with this vaccine and there is with any other vaccine, that influenza vaccine isn't considered to be very safe that you might get soreness in your arm when you have it. There is a lot of concern among parents about vaccine safety and there have been no studies that have proven any link between vaccines and autism for example. Leena Gokhale: If they might get asthma, should they still get H1N1 vaccine? Dana Points: And if your child hasn't underlying condition like asthma or diabetes that put them on high risk in general. They are certainly someone you need to be more careful with that as well. And it will be up to your doctor to decide whether if that something that makes sense for your child. Karen Arbour: Is H1N1 being overhyped or should I really be concerned for my family? Dana Points: It's hard for even the leading virologist experts have really no idea what's going to happen. They have looked to the big influenza at the time, back in 1980, and they say we could have that situation where it starts out mild. And then when it comes back in the form the winter is much more severe, but we really don't know. Rhiannon Ally: To keep from getting sick teach your kids not to cough or sneeze into their hands, but into their arms like this instead. Now surgical mask really won't protect you against either type of flu, but if you are sick you may want go ahead and wear one just to keep your loved ones from getting ill. For Better I am Rhiannon. Audra Lowe: Well the H1N1 flu vaccine is scheduled to be available by mid October. If you have got more question, or want to get your child vaccinated you should check with your doctor.