Health Center prepares for busy immunization season

Sep 2nd, 2009 | By | Category: Campus News, Issue, September 3, 2009

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The University Health Center is gearing up for a busy semester, according to Linda Rizijs, UHC’s director of nursing.

“I’m looking for outside nurses to help with immunization clinics,” said Rizijs. “I’m not sure what to expect but I want to be prepared.”

First semester is typically busy with the influx of new freshmen and international students who need to bring immunizations up-to-date. But this fall, UHC is adding a new immunization to the mix: the H1N1 influenza vaccine.

In the wake of last spring’s H1N1 flu pandemic, UHC is anticipating the arrival of a shipment of vaccine to prevent a resurgence of H1N1.

“The Nebraska State Health Department will receive the shipment from the Centers for Disease Control and decide how the vaccine will be distributed and in what quantities,” said Rizijs.

The H1N1 vaccine will be administered in two shots, one month apart. At this point, a vaccine shortage is not expected, but the immunizations will be offered first to priority groups identified by the CDC. Those include pregnant women, those under age 25 and older people with chronic illnesses or compromised immune systems.

A delivery date for the H1N1 vaccine has not been determined but the vaccine for the seasonal influenza is expected to be available in October as usual. The seasonal influenza will not protect against H1N1. UHC will offer immunization clinics for both H1N1 and seasonal influenza and will notify the campus community of dates and times as information becomes available.

The seasonal flu shot is available to staff and faculty for $20, and $30 for the nasal spray version. Rizijs anticipates the H1N1 immunization will be offered at a very low cost, probably just enough to cover administrative fees.

UHC also offers an international immunization clinic that covers shots typically hard to find off-campus, everything from malaria and rabies to yellow fever and Japanese encephalitis. Staff and faculty who are traveling to exotic destinations can make an appointment with the travel nurse and receive a printout of the most current immunization requirements from the Centers for Disease Control. The international immunization clinic is also open to the general public.

— By Mary Jane Bruce, University Communications

This is a new monthly column highlighting elements of UNL’s wellness initiative. For more information, contact Troy Fedderson at or 472-8515.

Immunization contacts

For additional information about immunizations, check out these campus links and phone numbers:

University Health Center • 472-5000

International Travel/Immunization Nurse • 472-7477

H1N1 Information

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