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College Students Urged to Get H1N1 Vaccination

Release Date: December 18, 2009
Contact: Carol Schriber, 919-733-9190

RALEIGH — State Health Director Jeffrey Engel strongly urges young adults, including college students and teens, to get their H1N1 vaccinations before returning to campus from the winter break. According to statistics gathered by the N.C. Division of Public Health, people of college age are the least likely to be immunized against H1N1.  

More than 495,000 students are enrolled in colleges in North Carolina. Vaccination efforts to date have reached just over 60,000 people between 19 years old and 24 years old statewide. Campus immunization campaigns appear to have reached just a fraction of that number. The latest estimates indicate that fewer than 13 percent of the H1N1 vaccine doses provided by the state went to traditional college-age students.

“Our young people are our greatest resource, and we want to make sure they remain healthy,” Dr. Engel said. “The holidays are a perfect time for parents to ensure that their teens and college students are vaccinated against H1N1.”

As of Dec. 15, North Carolina had reported 76 deaths from H1N1. While pregnant women, people with chronic illnesses, and young children are most at risk for complications, this strain of flu has had a disproportionate impact on young, healthy people.

“We have good supplies of H1N1 vaccine on hand,” Engel said. “The peak of seasonal flu is approaching in late January. Getting both vaccinations now is the best way to protect yourself and your family against both seasonal and the H1N1 virus.”

For updated information on vaccination clinics near you, visit



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