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Old 10-27-2009, 01:17 PM   #1
Exodia
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Default Confusion on So Many Levels

My local county and school district can't seem to get on the same page.

H1N1 is widespread in my district (including DS and DW), yet until yesterday it was barely acknowleged. Then yesterday there was a flury of letters and forms about H1N1 and the vaccinations they were going to do at the school level. Here is the letter from the Superintendant:

Quote:
October 26, 2009

Dear Parent:
The Neshaminy School District is monitoring the attendance of our students with regard to absences due to both seasonal and H1N1 flu. We are working closely with the Bucks County Department of Health to offer free H1N1 flu vaccine to your child/children. To date we have not been contacted regarding the availability of this distribution.

We are being asked to send home the enclosed vaccination consent form. This is a voluntary program and we are asking that if you have an interest in your child/children receiving the H1N1 flu vaccine to please complete the consent form and return it with your child to school by November 2, 2009. This will enable us to better anticipate the number of doses needed to be distributed by the Department of Health.

There have been a number of concerns expressed regarding differentiating the H1N1 flu and the seasonal flu. The Department of Health states that the symptoms of the H1N1 flu and the seasonal flu are the same so the treatment of both types is the same. The recommendations continue to stress to follow good hygiene practices. We are asking that you try to remain calm as we have flu each year and while this is a different strain, it is not any more severe. The common steps to good health include covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, throw the tissue in the trash after you use it, wash your hands with soap and water or use an alcohol hand rub, try to avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and try to avoid close contact with sick people. If you are sick with flu like illness, the CDC recommends that you stay home for at least twenty four hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities.
I will be contacting you as soon as more information is available regarding scheduling opportunities to receive immunization in our schools. If you have specific questions related to this topic, please seek assistance and guidance from your family physician.

Sincerely,
Louis T. Muenker, D.Ed.
Superintendent of Schools

http://www.neshaminy.k12.pa.us/nesha...ent_Letter.pdf
Also provided was this letter from the County Health Dept:
Sorry, can paste the test of the PDF, here is the linK:
http://www.neshaminy.k12.pa.us/nesha...cks_Letter.pdf
It talks about working with the schools to set up vaccination clinics.


Then, the next day (this morning), this article appears in the pocal paper:

Quote:
Bucks switches swine flu strategy
By: JO CIAVAGLIA

The Intelligencer
The Bucks County Health Department has given most of its initial vaccine supply to private doctors.


The Bucks County Health Department has distributed most of its first, limited swine flu vaccine to doctors rather than continue saving it for mass school clinics.

Department Director Dr. David Damsker gave most of the 700 doses to local private practices, which had placed small H1N1 vaccine orders, leaving them near the bottom of the state's distribution priority list.

The county last week divided 500 doses of its inhaled vaccine to 11 practices, including pediatricians, family practices and internists who ordered fewer than 100 doses, Damsker said.

Most of what is leftover is the harder-to-find flu shot recommended for pregnant women and people with underlying medical problems, Damsker said. County health workers plan to distribute the remaining injected doses among local OB-GYN practices that didn't order the vaccine and have only a small number of pregnant women, Damsker said.

Vaccinating schoolchildren remains the county's top priority, but it has not received a significant vaccine delivery yet, Damsker said. Bucks County has received far less H1N1 vaccine than some of its neighbors.

snip

"We need to get some large shipments to make a real dent. I feel stuck in the middle because we're getting the angry and concerned calls from Bucks County citizens, but we put our order in," Damsker said. "I can't make vaccine magically appear."

Last week the county received no H1N1 vaccine delivery, Damsker said. By now, he had expected to have at least 50,000 doses. (but got only 700 )

Bucks County health officials, who ordered 100,000 doses on behalf of the 13 school districts, initially planned to stockpile the vaccine until it accumulated at least several thousand doses before beginning the school clinics.

But that was when the state's supply projections were rosier. At this point, Damsker projects a late November start for the school mass clinics - assuming large shipments arrive soon, he said.

snip
So now, they are not doing the vaccinations through the schools?

Announced 1 day after the letters/consent forms go home?

We wonder why people are confused about what is going on...
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Old 10-27-2009, 03:32 PM   #2
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Confusion rules (and sorry about your families ills). This is from our school district:

Quote:
Dear Parents,

I want to share some important information about xxx plans to administer the H1N1 vaccinations for students. If you did not request the H1N1 vaccine for your child, you may disregard this message.

1. To date, xxx has received a limited supply of the H1N1 vaccine (nasal mist only).

2. Although we do not know when we will begin to receive additional vaccine (shot or nasal mist), we have decided to proceed with administering the H1N1 nasal mist vaccine we have on hand.

3. Tomorrow, we will begin distributing the nasal mist vaccine to all schools as equitably as possible. Every school will receive a small quantity of the nasal mist.

4. At the elementary level, vaccines will be administered by grade level, beginning with kindergarten and working up to fifth grade as more vaccine becomes available. At the middle and high schools, students will be identified to receive the nasal mist based on the order in which the requests came in to the school (first come, first served).

5. We will administer the nasal mist vaccine we have on hand this week. Each principal will communicate their plans to parents and students as appropriate to ensure sufficient notice for those who are chosen to be vaccinated, indicating the time and location for the vaccinations.

6. The St. Louis County Health Department has informed xxx that future shipments of vaccine may be delayed, but we will administer whatever vaccine we receive as soon as possible and as equitably as possible.

7. To make this process go smoothly, please be sure your child's school nurse is aware of any medical conditions your child may have.

We appreciate your continued efforts in keeping your child home whenever he or she exhibits flu-like symptoms. Please remember your child must remain at home until he or she is fever free for at least 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medicines. If you have specific questions, please contact your school's nurse.

Thank you for your patience in this process. We are committed to working together to keep your child healthy and safe, and will keep you updated as we get more information.

Sincerely,

Superintendent
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