Pregnant women infected with the H1N1 influenza A virus are more likely than others who are infected with the virus to experience hospitalizations, and are possibly more likely to die from infection complications, according to federal and state public health professionals. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee made recommendations last month about who should receive the novel influenza A (H1N1) vaccine when it becomes available. Pregnant women were identified as one of the five priority groups because they have a higher risk of complications from infection. Women have already died from H1N1 complications. According to the CDC, six or 13 percent, of the 45 H1N1 deaths reported between April 15 and June 16 of this year were pregnant women.
Exempla Lutheran Medical Center, in partnership with Jefferson County Public Health, is offering a free educational session for pregnant women about influenza, including H1N1. This informative session will help pregnant women to understand their risks and how they can stay healthy during the flu season.
Free Educational Session- Pregnancy and H1N1 Tuesday. Sept 8, 2009 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Wheat Ridge Recreation Center 4005 Kipling St. Wheat Ridge, CO To register call: 303-425-8154.
Influenza vaccination efforts are designed to help reduce the impact and spread of seasonal flu in addition to novel influenza A (H1N1). When vaccine for H1N1 becomes available (possibly in late October/early November) programs and providers have been advised to vaccinate:
v pregnant women,
v people who live with or care for children younger than 6 months of age,
v health care and emergency medical services personnel,
v persons between the ages of 6 months through 24 years of age, and
v people from ages 25 through 64 who are at higher risk for novel H1N1 because of chronic health disorders or who are compromised
As Jefferson County Public Health and its community partners prepare for influenza immunization activities this fall, everyone is urged to play their part in preventing the spread of flu in our communities. That means paying close attention to hand washing, covering your cough or sneeze, staying home from work and school when sick and getting both the seasonal and H1N1 influenza vaccines when they become available.
For more information:
v Exempla Lutheran Medical Center, 303-435-8154
v Public Health Planning and Preparedness: Christine E. Billings, MPH
Regional Emergency Preparedness Epidemiologist, 303.271.5742 or email@example.com
v Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: www.cdc.gov/H1N1
v Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Help Line:
1-877-462-2911 or http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/epr/h1n1.html