Phoebe employees first in line to fight flu - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Phoebe employees first in line to fight flu

By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

October 6, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Phoebe Putney Hospital employees are first in line to fight the flu. Phoebe kicked off an Olympic flu shot challenge Monday.

The hospital hopes at least 70% of its employees will get vaccinated. The hospital was close to achieving that goal last year, with a 67% total rate. The shots are free to employees and are convenient. Phoebe will go department to department to vaccinate employees and will even set up drive through vaccine stations.

Will Peterson said, "We feel it's our obligation to set an example. We feel like we need to start first and foremost with our employees." Dr. Doug Patten said, "We're at higher risk to get it and higher risk to give it to a vulnerable population. Not only that, but we have the risk of spreading it to our families who then take it out to the community, so it's very important that health care workers have the highest possible vaccination rates."

Hospital officials say it's important to get vaccinated early in the flu season. Children, pregnant women, people over 50, health care workers and those with chronic medical conditions are most at risk for contracting the flu.

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