LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – Santa has a serious request this year, and no, it's not cookies and milk. This year Santas across the country want the H1N1 vaccine. Santa's station is a kid friendly place, but it can also hold lots of germs. That's why Santa and his helpers are asking for the H1N1 vaccine.
Santa's making his list and checking it twice. But this year, not without his hand sanitizer. "It helps them so it works," said Santa Claus.
"They're all touching the same stuff waiting in line so yeah," said Julie Gober, mom.
For the first time, Santa Claus has ditched the traditional white gloves, going barehanded, all for your kids sake. "At least it will keep down some of the germs because the germs stick to the gloves," said Julie McGrath, mom.
"I'm not sure how gloves, if they would hold the germs or not, but I like the idea of the hand sanitizer," Gober said. "I think that's great."
Thousands of kids will sit on Santa's lap to whisper their Christmas list into his ear. That close contact is potentially setting-up Santa for exposure to H1N1.
"Well there's so many kids with the H1N1 and there's so many areas you can't get the vaccine in yet," Gober said. "I think everything we can do to prevent the spread of it is a good idea."
These kids are counting on Santa to stay well. This year they have some serious requests. Santa wants to make sure he's healthy enough to deliver.
Parents are urged to keep sick kids away from Santa hot spots like the mall.