Ed.Note: Secretary Sebellius got her own vaccination soon after this was posted, read the release (complete with photo).
This time of year, Americans are getting ready to travel and spend time with family for the holidays. It’s really important that we all take extra steps to protect ourselves and those around us from getting sick.
There’s no question that the best protection against the flu is to get vaccinated.
Now is an especially good window of opportunity to get the H1N1 vaccine, since supplies are growing by the day. This means that more people have access to the vaccine.
Don’t know where to go to get vaccinated? We made it easy for you. We teamed up with Google to create an easy-to-use tool that allows you to find the nearest location to get the H1N1 and seasonal flu vaccines.
It’s easy. Just type in your zip code, and the locator takes you to a Google map with the locations nearest you that offer the vaccines – both the nasal spray vaccine and the shot.
We are encouraging everyone to take advantage of this window of opportunity, particularly if you are in one of the priority groups. These groups are people who are more susceptible than others, including: pregnant women; children and young adults under age 25; people who have an underlying health condition like asthma or diabetes; health care workers; and people who care for babies under six months old. Also, it’s recommended that adults from 25 to 64 years old get vaccinated, and, in many places, the vaccine is now available to anyone who wants it.
This holiday season, we want you to stay as healthy and as safe as possible. With the flu vaccine locator, you are one click away from finding the nearest vaccination clinic.
Take a minute to locate a vaccine near you, and then share this tool with your friends and family. Visit Flu.gov for more information.
Kathleen Sebelius is Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services