The Knox County Health Department (KCHD) will launch this year’s in-school influenza (FluMist) vaccination program Monday, Sept. 15. Vaccination clinics are scheduled in Knox County elementary and middle schools as well as some Head Starts, private schools and child care centers.
FluMist is an intra-nasal influenza vaccine that is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in children as young as 2. Children who are younger than 2 will receive a flu shot at the vaccination clinics. No child will be vaccinated without a completed, signed and returned consent form. Parents or guardians may complete the form online at knoxcounty.org/health/flumist. Parents may also download paper consent forms and view a schedule of the vaccination clinics on this same Web page.
On average, KCHD has vaccinated approximately 45 percent of Knox County’s school-aged children each year. This program is a national model for community flu prevention. Evidence supports vaccinating children as a way to protect the entire community from influenza. Since the inception of in-school clinics, Knox County Schools have not closed due to seasonal flu. (Two Knox County schools were closed in 2008 following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for H1N1 flu. Those recommendations have since changed.)
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