By Heidy Penate
LOGOS STAFF WRITER
Health Services at the University of the Incarnate Word began injecting this year’s inactivated influenza vaccine this week to anyone over the age of 36 months, an official said.
The injections are available on a first-come, first-serve basis for $25 cash, check or charge, said David Allwein, assistant director of Health Services.
“Students should get the vaccine because it has a protective immunity of 70 percent to the flu,” Allwein said. “Everyone should get the vaccine — especially high-risk patients.”
High-risk patients include people with a history of asthma, diabetes, and depressed immune systems. Patients who should definitely get the vaccine are pregnant women and people over 60.
“Because the vaccine is cultivated with egg and egg products, people who are allergic to these should not get the vaccine,” Allwein said. “The vaccines that we use are a high-dose vaccine that has four times the antigen dose of the regular flu vaccine.”
According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, some of the common side effects to the vaccine are fever, cough, sore throat, chills, fatigue, headache, muscle ache and swelling. These effects generally last one to two days.
“The CDC is the agency responsible for administering the components of the flu each year. This year’s vaccine includes the H1N1 strain, so a separate vaccine is not required,” Allwein said.
“There is a limited amount of vaccines and if students cannot come to our office, they should get the vaccine elsewhere. Common places offering the vaccine (include) H-E-B pharmacies, Walgreens, and the Metropolitan Health District,” Allwein said.