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Higher costs mean hike in vaccines

Because of higher costs this year, the Ironton City Health Department has increased the prices of flu and pneumonia vaccines.

"The vaccines cost us more this year, so we must recoup our costs," said Charles Kouns, superintendent of the health department. "Last year, we were worried about getting them at all."

The flu shot will go from $10 to $15. The pneumonia shots will increase from $15 to $25.

The Ironton City Board of Health approved the raise in a special meeting Aug. 29 and the Ironton City Council adopted an ordinance to amend the budget in regular session last Thursday.

Kouns said the health department will have enough shots available, but it will just cost a little more.

Flu shots are needed each year, but pneumonia shots reportedly last for up to 10 years, he said.

The health department will order a total of 2,000 vaccinations. Five hundred will be purchased from the Ohio Department of Health and can only be given to the elderly -- 65 or older -- or the chronically ill.

The remainder of the shots will be purchased from either Aventis Pasteur or Besse Medical Supply and can be administered to anyone. The department hopes to start giving the vaccinations the last week of September or the first week of October, Kouns said.

Kouns said anyone interested in getting the shots should consult with their family physician first. Michael Caldwell/The Ironton Tribune