Carson health department honored with state award

This column appears in the Nevada Appeal Wednesday health pages. It addresses topics related to the health of our community.

Carson City Health and Human Services’ community outreach vaccination program has won a Silver Syringe Award from Immunize Nevada, a coalition of more than 100 members working together to help improve the health of Nevadans through vaccination awareness, outreach and education. Karen Allen, RN, who manages the flu outreach program for the Public Health Preparedness Program at CCHHS, was awarded an honorable mention.

CCHHS’s nurses and administrative staffers work tirelessly to ensure that Carson City residents have plenty of affordable opportunities to be vaccinated against the flu. Careful planning, beginning well in advance of the annual community flu vaccination held each October, ensures that the flu vaccination program runs as smoothly as possible. Although the drive-through clinics in Carson City and Douglas County are the most high-profile of the events, numerous other outreach clinics are held in cooperation with employers and organizations. This year’s outreach efforts resulted in nearly 6,000 Western Nevada residents receiving flu vaccinations at 50 events across the region.

The school-located vaccination program is another important part of the successful flu vaccination campaign. The program, funded in part through a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Nevada State Immunization Program, immunized 4,000 students, staffers and faculty members at 40 schools in Carson City and Douglas, Lyon and Storey counties. Many parents and staffers comment how grateful they are for the program, as they do not have to take time off work to get children vaccinated or pay additional fees, and the vaccinations are affordable for families.

Carson City Health and Human Services would like to thank the many community partners who participate in the flu vaccination program. Partnerships and cooperation are a cornerstone to our ability to provide this important service. The award for 2013 Outstanding Influenza Immunization Program will be presented to CCHHS staffers during the 16th Annual Silver Syringe Awards, set for March 1 at the Peppermill Reno.

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