H1N1 vaccine clinics draw few students

The health center is holding another clinic Tuesday and Wednesday.
Spencer Pearson / Graphic Designer

The Student Health Center offered H1N1 vaccines at a free outreach clinic Jan. 26 and Jan. 27, but attendance fell short of the number it had hoped for, Student Health Center Director Susan Even said.

Over the course of the two-day clinic in Bingham Commons, 21 students received the vaccine.

"We were hoping for at least 75 students each night," Even said. "We send several nurses to each outreach clinic."

MU spokesman Christian Basi said the university put in a request to the Columbia/Boone County Department of Health and Human Services for the vaccine as soon as it became available in the fall.

"We requested a certain number of doses because the age of our students fell into a higher priority category," Basi said. "They gave us as many as they could and we were responsible for distributing the doses."

Even said the Student Health Center has more than 700 doses available for students and that students can obtain them by making an appointment specifically for the vaccine or through an appointment in the primary care clinic.

According to the Student Health Center Web site, more than 650 students in total attended outreach clinics held before winter break, but a clinic held in late November drew fewer than 10 students.

The clinics in the fall didn't receive a lot of publicity partially because the health center wasn't sure how many vaccines it would receive or when, according to a previous Maneater article.

Even said the Student Health Center has been working with students and the Missouri Students Association on campus to promote the free clinics.

"We have been working with MSA (Senate) Speaker Amanda Shelton to increase the awareness of students regarding the availability of the vaccine," Even said.

The health center is also holding outreach clinics Tuesday and Wednesday in Bingham Commons 127. Even said there are no plans for more clinics later in the semester, but they will remain a possibility.

"We will continue to offer the H1N1 vaccine throughout the entire semester at the Student Health Center," Even said. "We will schedule more outreach clinics if we are able to determine adequate student interest."

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