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Importance of vaccination for hurricane season

Eric Lee / Bloomberg via Getty Images

Should you have to evacuate to a hotel, shelter or even a family member’s house, officials want you to be prepared and have your Covid-19 vaccine.

Posted: May 18, 2021 9:14 PM

LOUISIANA (KADN) - With experts predicting this hurricane season to be above average, that brings the possibility of having to evacuate your home at some point.

Should you have to evacuate to a hotel, shelter or even a family member’s house, officials want you to be prepared and have your Covid-19 vaccine.

Regional Medical Director for Region 4, Dr. Tina Stefanski says it’s imperative that you get vaccinated if haven’t done so already.

"This severe weather that we’re seeing over the last few days and days to come is a good reminder that for hurricane season, we’re definitely at risk," Dr. Stefanski said.

With both the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines being the most popular choices for vaccination and both requiring two doses, weeks apart, Stefanski says it’s important to plan ahead if you aren’t vaccinated.

"That takes at least four to five weeks, up to six weeks to get protection. You need to start that series now so that you’ll be fully protected by the time we get into the peak of hurricane season," she said.

With the Pfizer vaccine now available to children as young as 12-years-old, she says it’s equally as important to vaccinate your little ones even if they’re less likely to develop a severe reaction from catching the virus.

"If you do end up having to evacuate and be in an environment where people are crowded together. So if you go to family or friends house or apartment or to a shelter, if your child is vaccinated then that is better for the group at large because it’s less likely that there’ll be a spread of infection," she said.

She adds that severe weather also bring the possibility of slowing down vaccination sites, making it more difficult to get a vaccine during peak hurricane season.

"Flooding, severe weather we know definitely shifts the focus. So when people are in protection and recovery mode pre and post storm, that will limit access for people because healthcare in general, lots of things have to be put on hold as you’re dealing with an event and then the immediate aftermath."

The governor’s office also encourages everyone to get one of the three available vaccines as the first step to preparing you and your family for this upcoming hurricane season.

For more information you can visit Get A Game Plan.

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