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At the Nov. 23 City Council meeting, Health and Human Services Director Evonda Thomas told members of the City Council she had some “good news” – nearly 12,000 Evanston residents in the priority groups targeted by the Centers for Disease Control have been vaccinated against the H1N1 virus.

“The Evanston Department of Health and Human Services has hosted 26 vaccination clinics, two first-responder clinics and two public clinics,” Ms. Thomas said, vaccinating “11,989 high-risk individuals – about one-third of the expected number.” This high number of vaccinations, she said, “will cocoon and create herd immunity” for those who have not yet been vaccinated.

Ms. Thomas also said that there was a “disparity in populations” receiving the vaccinations and that the City had contacted faith-based congregations, pharmacies and private practitioners that had been approved to receive doses of the vaccine but had not yet received their shipments and offered them the 760 doses (700 attenuated and 60 live vaccines) remaining from the City’s previous weekend’s clinic. “When these providers receive their vaccines, they will repay the City,” she said.

Alderman Jane Grover, 7th Ward, congratulated Ms. Thomas and her staff for the “enormous deployment of people and resources” that allowed the City to vaccinate nearly 12,000 residents in three weeks. “This took a lot of logistics and security and a lot of hand-holding,” she said.

Anyone who has further questions or concerns about H1N1 is asked to call the Department of Health and Human Services, 847-866-2948.