H1N1’s impact greater among American Indian populationsThe H1N1 swine flu is hitting American Indians four times as hard as the general population, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
By: Nick LaFave, Fox 21 News
FOND DU LAC RESERVATION — The H1N1 swine flu is hitting American Indians four times as hard as the general population, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
On the Fond du Lac Reservation, they say that’s all the more reason to vaccinate as many people as possible.
At the Fond du Lac Human Services Center, they’re alerting tribal members of the higher mortality rates Indians are experiencing due to the swine flu. A seven-month CDC study found that of more than 400 swine flu deaths, nearly
10 percent were Native Americans, even though they only made up 3 percent of the sample population.
Fond du Lac director of human services Chuck Walt said it’s not unusual for Indians to have a higher mortality rate from flu.
“We do know the Native American population has a higher instance of diabetes and other, what we would call co-morbidities that make them more vulnerable to some adverse effects of flu in general.”
The CDC cites higher rates of underlying health conditions as a contributing factor as well as poverty, lack of immediate health care and low vaccination rates.
There are roughly
4,000 people on the Fond du Lac Reservation, and with the vaccine now being made available to everyone 3 years old and up, Walt said now it’s just a matter of vaccinating as many people as possible.
The Fond du Lac Reservation is offering three H1N1 clinics this week: