November 30, 2001

San Ysidro Health Center Offering Free Drive-Thru Flu Shots

Once again, flu season has found the San Diego health care community scrambling for vaccine. San Ysidro Health Center is ready to help out with free drive-through flu shots on Saturday, December 1 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon.

Ed Martinez, Executive Director at San Ysidro Health Center, emphasized that the Center has available 600 doses of the flu vaccine for the drive-thru clinic. "We are encouraging individuals who run a high risk of complications from influenza to drive up, stick out their arms and receive a protective inoculation," said Martinez. Individuals particularly at risk include children or adults, including pregnant women, who have long-term health problems associated with heart disease, anemia, lung and kidney disease, diabetes, and asthma. Others in this category include people who have been admitted to a hospital within the past year. Anyone over age 65 is especially at risk.

Additional "at risk" candidates for the vaccine include those with HIV or immune system problems, children and teens, six months to 18 years of age, who are on long-term aspirin therapy, women who will be more than three months pregnant during flu season and those who smoke.

"We want to be proactive and to as much as we can to maintain people's health," Martinez. "We also want to reduce the potential strain on our physicians and facilities during the upcoming flu season." He added that by offering these free flu shots, SYHC hopes to prevent a sudden and dramatic influx of flu cases that could easily distract it from its real mission, which is meeting the everyday medical needs of the communities we serve."

Flu vaccine recipients are encouraged to consult their doctor prior to receiving the flu shot if they are allergic to eggs or have had a severe reaction to a flu shot in the past. The flu shots will be administered by licensed nurses in the west parking lot of San Ysidro Health Center, located at 4004 Beyer Boulevard, in San Ysidro. Vaccine recipients should enter the parking lot from Cottonwood Street, at which point they will sign a consent form and proceed to the inoculation area.

The San Ysidro Health Center is a community based healtcare facility serving low income and underinsured residents of the South Bay. For additional information, please contact the San Ysidro Health Center at 619-662-4104.

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