Monday, October 5, 2009

H1N1 411

This week marks the much anticipated first deliveries of the H1N1 (Swine Flu) vaccine to doctors' offices, health clinics and school districts around the country. But do you have the facts? Should you get the vaccine? If you want it, where can you get it? What if you're pregnant? Should you vaccinate your kids? Is the darn thing safe?

As usual, NPR has a done a terrific job answering the important questions on a major issue. See, they've got a woman on the inside. Journalist Joanne Silberner reports from a front row seat at the CDC's (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Emergency Operations Center, a place where the nation's top health officials monitor all major public health situations, including continued H1N1 outbreaks and the vaccine response. You can listen to the full report here.

Additionally, NPR.org posts listener questions and the expert responses. ("[T]ake the flu vaccine," Dr. Frank Witter, a specialist in maternal-fetal medicine at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, tells pregnant women.)

It's a great place to start your research and make your decisions regarding H1N1, the vaccine and your family.

Additional resources:

CDC H1N1 page

AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) H1N1 info

WHO (World Health Organization) H1N1 response

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