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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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Over 1,500 Students Received Swine Flu Vaccine

As swine flu spreads worldwide, Stony Brook students are responding by receiving H1N1 vaccinations, which were given out for free once again in the Traditions Lounge of the SAC on Nov. 5, 6 and 9.

A total of 1508 students decided to be vaccinated over the three-day period, and Monday’s total vaccinations alone were more than half the amount of the vaccinations given in the preceding two distributions.

According to Gary Kaczmarczyk, director of Environmental Health and Safety at Stony Brook, over 2,700 vaccines have been distributed on campus to date at separate points of distribution, or P.O.D.

The New York State Department of Health supplies vaccines and distributes them based on overall demand statewide. However, ‘Stony Brook is unique in the sense that we got our vaccines earlier than others,’ said Larry Zacarese, assistant Chief of Police and director of Emergency Management.

Allegra Waters, a Marine Vertebrate Biology major, decided to get vaccinated because of her awareness of the virus’ increasing impact. Her roommate’s mom, a hospital nurse, recommended that she get the vaccine.

The New York State Department of Health notes, on their website, that indeed the number of hospitalizations for influenza-like-illness ‘appears to be increasing [statewide].’

Joe Cancellieri, a Humanities major, was pleasantly surprised by how fast the entire process really was. He noticed that it only took about five minutes from the time he filled out his preliminary form until he was on his way.

After many students quickly exited the vaccination stations, lollipops cheered their spirits. Students also walked away with a Flu Prevention Kit filled with a complementary thermometer, tissues, hand sanitizer, and a fact card with information on how to recognize flu symptoms, courtesy of student volunteers in the ILI Task Force from the Center for Prevention and Outreach.

Shefife Simnica, a psychology major, had an encounter’ closer to home before she decided to be vaccinated when she said, ‘I know someone on campus who had it, and I was like, oh my God I don’t want to get it. It’s better safe than sorry I guess.’

The separate distribution points are coordinated by the University Police Office of Emergency Management, with the involvement and assistance from Student Health Services, as well as other campus organizations.

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