Health district lifts restrictions on H1N1 vaccine

BREMERTON — Anyone who wants to roll up their sleeve or take a deep breath can now get the H1N1 vaccine.

The Kitsap County Health District is now offering the vaccine to anyone who wants it, rather than just the at-risk groups, health district spokeswoman Cris Craig said Monday morning. The restrictions were removed Monday in Kitsap, Clallam and Jefferson counties.

Viruses often come in waves of three, she said, and health officials expect the H1N1 virus to be no different. The second wave came in late October and the H1N1 numbers have been waning since November. Health officials expect another wave in late January or February through late spring, according to a press release from the health district.

More than 40,800 doses of H1N1 vaccine have been distributed in Kitsap County. The health district is encouraging residents to contact their health care provider to see if the vaccine is available. In addition, the vaccine is available in the pharmacies at Walgreens, Safeway, Fred Meyer, Rite Aid, Kitsap Pharmacy at Central Market and Albertsons Sav-on Pharmacies, the health district Web site states.

The vaccine is available both as an injection and a nasal inhalant, Craig said.

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