MSU gives the H1N1 vaccine to students

By Adam Hooper - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - "We are the only university in Louisiana that is administering the H1N1 vaccine," said Candace Townsend communications director for McNeese State University.

State officials confirm three more deaths, bringing the total blamed on H1N1 to thirty-three. The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals estimates that more than 172-thousand Louisiana residents have had the virus, or have it right now. More than 56-thousand doses of the vaccine have been administered so far.

McNeese officials said they were very proactive when they were given the opportunity to serve as a voluntary vaccination site, allowing them to offer the vaccine free of charge to students and staff members.

"If we do get to a point where there is a significant number of cases in the area, then hopefully most of our employees and students will have taken advantage of the vaccination that we are offering," said Candace Townsend.

While it has not been too busy, there has been a steady flow of students lining up to get the vaccine, with over 1,200 administered so far.

"It is great. You get a free vaccine. Now, with the cost of medication, it can get expensive. Why not take advantage of a free vaccine," said McNeese Student Jake Waldmeier

"I am very grateful. Considering the profession that I am in, it is really a positive thing for us,"said McNeese Student, Kristina Vidrina.

But, for people who do not go to McNeese there are other options, with drug stores starting to receive the vaccine.

"The state waived the need for a prescription this year, for the flu vaccine. Anyone can come in and request to have the vaccine," said Felicia Broussard with the Kroger pharmacy.

Copyright 2009 KPLC-TV. All rights Reserved.