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University of Iowa News Release

Oct. 18, 2004

UI Hospitals And Clinics Immunizing Priority Groups Against Influenza

Specialists at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics announced today that they are following guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) when providing immunizations against influenza this fall and winter.

The CDC's interim recommendations for influenza vaccination during the 2004-05 season include the following priority groups:

-- all children ages six months to 23 months old

-- adults age 65 and above

-- persons ages two to 64 with underlying chronic medical conditions

-- all women who will be pregnant during influenza season

-- residents of nursing homes and long-term care facilities

-- children ages six months to 18 years old on chronic aspirin therapy

-- health care workers with direct patient care

-- out-of-home caregivers and household contacts of children less than six months old

The complete set of interim recommendations can be found at http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2004pres/20041005b.html.

Beginning Oct. 21, faculty and staff with direct patient duties at UI Hospitals and Clinics will receive flu shots. According to the Iowa Department of Public Health standards of practice, health care workers who do not provide direct, hands-on patient care should not seek to receive the influenza vaccine, unless they meet the criteria for inclusion in one of the other priority groups listed above.

Faculty and staff at UI Hospitals and Clinics will receive flu shots in the University Employee Health Clinic. They will complete and sign a form to screen them for inclusion in a priority group. If all the needs of patients and other members of the priority groups are met, any available vaccine doses will be provided to the UI community and any other areas where they are needed.

All healthy people between the ages of two and 65 are being asked to forego or defer flu vaccination to enable as many people as possible in the high risk groups to receive the vaccine. Influenza immunizations will be provided as long as supplies last.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI Health Care online at http://www.uihealthcare.com.

STORY SOURCE: Joint Office for Marketing and Communications, University of Iowa Health Care, 200 Hawkins Drive, Room E110 GH, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1009

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Moore, 319-356-3945, thomas-moore@uiowa.edu.