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“The bottom line,” said Dr. Earl Campazzi of Island Medical Care at the Civic Association Flu Forum, “is you should receive the H1N1 vaccination after consultation with your physician.”

Both Dr. Campazzi and the Palm Beach Fire-Rescue Division EMS Chief Darryl Donatto said they have treated H1N1 victims in the Town of Palm Beach.

Florida is one of the top six states with widespread H1N1 cases.  They both also said it’s a good idea to get the seasonal flu shot too.  The science shows that they are safe.  You can get them both at the same time or the seasonal vaccine now and the H1N1 in a few weeks when they are available.

The H1N1 vaccination and seasonal flu vaccination have been thoroughly tested said the speakers.

Dr. Campazzi reported that 76 children in the U.S. have died from H1N1 already and that this is about the pediatric mortality rate for an entire flu season.  Of all age groups, 5,623 have died worldwide.

Mr. Donatto pointed out that the seasonal flu is one of the Top 10 Killers in the 65+ age group.  The regular flu takes the lives of 36,000 per year on average in the U.S.

Both the seasonal flu, which has not arrived in Palm Beach County yet, and the H1N1 have the same symptoms: fever and body aches and pains.  If you have these symptoms, see your regular physician as soon as possible.  If it progresses to repeated vomiting, it’s time to go to the emergency room under the direction of your physician.