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Press Releases: Georgia

October 6, 2004

Kaiser Permanente of Georgia announces changes to flu shot schedule

ATLANTA, Ga. Due to flu vaccine shortages, Kaiser Permanente of Georgia has modified its criteria for flu shot administration and announced that high-risk members will be given priority for flu shots.

People in the high-risk category, based on CDC guidelines, includes children six months to 23 months; pregnant women; people age 65 or older; people with chronic illnesses such as asthma, diabetes, heart conditions and immune deficiencies; and health care workers with direct patient care.

Other than high-risk members, flu shots will only be given to the primary caregiver(s) for children less than six months old. The child must be a Kaiser Permanente member.

"Kaiser Permanente purchased its flu vaccine from Aventis, not Chiron. We have received about 40-45% of our allocation," said spokeswoman Earnestine Perry. "The remainder was due in Mid-October. Based on the current situation, we are working on the premise that we may not get anymore. We will continue to assess the situation as time goes on."

"We apologize for any inconvenience and will do our best to accommodate as many Kaiser Permanente members as possible," said Perry. "Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate the general public."

Kaiser Permanente members are encouraged to call Kaiser Permanente at (404) 365-0966 for specific times and dates for flu shots.

Kaiser Permanente is the state of Georgia's largest nonprofit health plan, serving the health care needs of Atlanta metro area residents for 22 years. Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Georgia, Inc. currently provides comprehensive health care services to approximately 275,000 members through 15 medical facilities in a 28-county service, and a network of affiliated hospitals and physicians. The Health Plan provided more than $5 million in community benefit programs and services.