You’re 3 Digits Away From Your Flu Shot


The sound of a sneeze in a public place these days can send chills down your spine.

"Does that person have swine flu?" Is a common thought, as the CDC recently announced the number of confirmed cases in the U.S. at about 6 million.

Even with the endless news reports on TV and information available on the Web and through Twitter, many people are not sure who is eligible for the vaccine and where they can go to get it.

City leaders are returning to basics to get the information out. The answers could be right at the other end of that old standby: the phone.

The three little digits that could hold the answer to all of your swine flu vaccination questions are: 211 -- the toll-free information service launched in the Bay Area last year.

Originally launched as a way to spread essential information about local community services, including food and shelter, counseling and child care services and critical information during a disaster, 211 is confidential and available 24 hours a day.

A call to 211 could answer questions about the H1N1 virus or the one now simply known as the seasonal flu. The information is available in 150 languages.

Residents who can't get to 211 for whatever reason can get the same swine flu vaccine information by dialing 1-800-273-6222.

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