East Texas health officials prepare for third wave of H1N1

By Jeff Awtrey - email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Local health officials say a third wave of the virus could come at any time, but people shouldn't panic, because they're prepared.

For four-year-old Carter Jinkins, it's tough to think about getting the H1N1 shot again.

"I don't want another one," Jinkins said. "It pretty hurt."

He wasn't the only one at his school to get the vaccination.

"The needle shot, when they poke that needle out, that really hurts," 5-year-old Wil Stafford said.

"It didn't hurt," four-year-old Tucker McCabe said.

Health officials say one vaccination against the virus alone may not be enough to fully protect your children that's why they encourage parents to get them vaccinated again.

"Most kids under the age of 10 have not developed sufficient antibodies after just one dose, mainly because it's such a new virus that has been introduced into our culture, our society," said Jon Hill of Angelina County & Cities Health District.

One teacher says she would feel better knowing her kids have had the H1N1 shots.

"In such a small classroom when one kid gets it, everybody is going to have it, so at least it cuts out the ones who have had the shot," said Lauren Collins, a teacher at Tulane Kids Academy.

"We see it as a building-block process," Hill said. "The first one is the foundation and the second one will round out that development of those antibodies so the immune system is familiar with that pathogen."

Hill says getting everyone vaccinated could be key to slowing the expected third wave of the virus.

"It's probably going to be more of a subtle thing and when we get into influenza season as we have historically known it to be in May, that's when we could expect to see a possible spike," Hill said.

Some kids, would prefer to forget dealing with a second needle.

Jinkins said it felt like "a dinosaur T-Rex bite."

"Because the other one hurted," four-year-old Macy McManus said.

But, Hill says it's important for parents to make kids stick it out once again.

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