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October 20, 2009 Issue No.3
H1N1 Vaccine is Available 
Swine flu
How to talk to Your child About Cancer
i'm sending out this brief newsletter to update you on the  on the Flu vaccine availability. There is also some info on a TV episode  that I think is excellent for parents and children.
Deb Bershel, MD
We Now Have H1N1 Flu Vaccine
Sneezing boyWe now have the H1N1 vaccine in but not the Seasonal flu vaccine. The H1N1 we are making available to the groups at highest risk for complications- patients under 25, all patients with asthma and the few patients that we have that are immunocompromised. Children under 6 months cannot get it but we will immunize parents even if they are not our patients. 
Currently, it is the H1N1 (otherwise known as Swine flu) that  is the influenza making the rounds. We have the live attenuated version (nasal spray) that can be given to those from 2-49 years of age. We also have the inactivated vaccine. It takes 2 weeks to develop immunity after getting the vaccine. You may take the H1N1 even if you had the seasonal flu vaccine a short time ago The only time you cannot take them both together is if you are getting the live-attenauted version of both.
Call the office to arrange to come in for a vaccine. We will try to accomodate your schedule and will continue to update you about the avalability of the vaccine as new supplies arrive.
Talking to children About cancer
Just wanted to tell you about a very valuable show  that is being aired this week on WGBH in the morning and early afternoon. It is an Arthur animated series episode on how to talk to chil;dren about cancer. I viewed it over the past weekend and it is geared to reach children at the elementary age level and slightly younger. The storyline revolves around the beloved  lunchlady, Mrs. McGrady, who comes down with cancer. It allows children to understand some of the issues involved when a person develops cancer and deals with some the common fears and misconceptions. It is truly excellent.
You can go online or call WGBH to obtain a wonderful workbook too.