CGH offers seasonal flu clinic

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GRANTS, N.M. – Cibola General Hospital is offering area residents influenza inoculations at a drive-through clinic this Friday, Sept. 25.

The Cibola Family Health Center, which is part of CGH, is hosting the annual event from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., 1423 E Roosevelt Ave., Grants.

“The flu shot clinic has zero out-of-pocket cost to the community,” said Cynthia Tena, marketing director, via email.

She added, “We ask for insurance cards in order to financially assist us with putting on the event (such as staffing, supplies, the vaccine, etc.).”

Everyone must wear a mask, stressed CGH officials.

The last flu clinic hosted by CGH and CFHC was on Sept. 27, 2019 and medical staff administered 902 shots, according to the marketing director. She noted that Friday’s clinic is the only one planned for this year.

Ninety-four community members assisted with last year’s oneday event. The list of volunteers included Grants Health Department, Grants Fire Department, Cibola County Emergency Management, Cibola Area Transit System – Rockin’ 66 Express, Wells Fargo – Grants Branch, City of Grants – Public Works Office, Superior Ambulance Service, Pueblo of Laguna PHN Program, Entrust Healthcare along with CGH and CFHC staff members, according to Tena.

Hospital officials referred to last year’s flu season and emphasized the threat that this seasonal illness poses to people of all ages.

Influenza caused 54 adult fatalities and five pediatric deaths in New Mexico during 2019-20. The flu season came on earlier and stronger than usual across New Mexico with a huge spike of cases around late December and early January, according to State Epidemiologist Dr. Michael Landen, New Mexico Department of Health.

Patients were ill with Influenza B but there was a second peak with Influenza A, specifically H1N1, before the flu season ended this past spring said Dr. Landen in May.

Other respiratory diseases caused additional deaths: 138 from pneumonia and a total of 197 people who had been diagnosed with both pneumonia and influenza died during the 2019-20 season, according to https://www.nmhealth.org/data/view/infectious/2387/

The NMDOH collects data on flu-like symptoms reported by hospital ER admissions or outpatient clinics, lab test results, hospitalizations, and deaths to get the full picture of how the flu affects the state, according to health officials.

CGH officials recommended that people pre-register online for the Sept. 25 clinic at https://www.facebook.com/cibola-hospital.

Community members can also pre-register by calling 505-287-5216 or 505-287-5208 during regular business hours.

In addition to Friday’s drive-through clinic, community members can schedule influenza inoculations with their primary healthcare provider and several area pharmacies also offer flu shots.

Visit cibolahospital.com or call 505-287-5208 for more information.