The Flash clinic at the Martha's Vineyard Hospital on Sunday administered a total of 812 flu vaccines to adults and children. On Thursday, Jan. 10, the six town's Boards of Health came together to offer the emergency relief clinic to Vineyard residents. Sunday's clinic was slated to open at 9:00 am; however, the first people received vaccinations at 7:30 am. At 11:30 am the supply of vaccines was exhausted.
Although the line for the vaccinations was long and daunting, the majority of people recieved the vaccinations in under 45 minutes.
The Island community has been hit heavily and not yet out of the woods. The numbers of those affected on the Vineyard have yet to be totaled or estimated, being that a number of people are dealing with the sickness in private, not seeking medical attention. Given the vague numbers of the incidence of influenza on the Vineyard, the outlook for the next week is uncertain.
The 2013 flu season has proven, so far, to be one of the worst in years. Massachusetts as a whole has reported a slight decrease in the cases of the flu which should indicate that we are heading out of the peak of the wave. Also, antiviral medications are in limited supply and practitioners and doctors are being advised to give pharmacies ample time to fill prescriptions.
Continue to take preventative measures to keep yourself and those around you healthy and for those suffering from the flu, seek medical attention if symptoms worsen.
Information for this article has been gathered from releases from the Dukes County Emergency Management group, Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency.