By Zen S. Laluna
LAS VEGAS – The last leg of the Southern Nevada HealthCare Coalition (SNHC)-sponsored Free Immunization Drive which began in the Fall and ended in the Spring, held its last free flu shots event on February 27 at the Greenland Supermarket on Spring Mountain Rd. in the cityâ€™s Korea Town district.
The SNHC, comprised of the Philippine Medical Association of Nevada, Philippine Nurses Association of Nevada, Center for Disease Control & Prevention, and Shots4Tots, in coordination with the Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD) partnered with the Asian-American Chamber of Commerce to provide free flu shots to Asian American residents of Las Vegas and neighboring cities. All in all, the SNHC has provided free immunization to close to 1,000 residents from September 2010 when it began its annual drive till February 2011.
The Annual Immunization Drive started in September 2010 with a press conference with the Asian-American media to assist in disseminating the importance of getting flu shots before the onset of winter time. The press conference was initiated by New America Media (NAM) headed by its long-time executive director Sandy Close.
Then came a full Immunization Drive held at the Seafood City and Asian Seafood Market, Chaiya Meditation Monastery, and the Sikh Temple in Las Vegas from November till December; and at the Greenland Supermarket in February this year.
The Annual Immunization campaign benefits not only the Asian American communities but everyone who feels the need for flu shots to combat common ailments associated with winter particularly the seasonal flu epidemic.
The SNHC (or COALITION) is assisted by numerous volunteers from the medical professions such as nurses and doctors, pharmacists, and healthcare providers, students and youths and the media that provide coverage to disseminate information city-wide.
The last free flu shots event was attended by PMAN president Dr. Ben Calderon, Dr. Teresita Melocoton, Dr. Lynn Quisumbing, Sheila Rivera and Carolyn Seward from SNHD, Dr. Cristina Madison – a pharmacist and professor with University of Southern Nevada who brought along her student volunteers Sarah Moore, Rachel Moore, Quynh Nguyen and Soyoung Eom, PNAN-RNs Fernando and Helen Ymson, Cynthia Narciso, Malou Richard, Sergio and Amelia Abella and their kids Allen and Adrian, youth volunteers Will Vicuna, Jr.,Ian Butler and Andy Luong, Vida Lin and the ever-present Nestor Melocoton.