The entire nation has been on alert for the latest strain of influenza since the spring of 2009. The people of the USA have been promised the H1N1 vaccine would be produced and distributed in plenty of time to avert an overwhelming outbreak of H1N1 swine flu.

This outbreak was predicted to occur about early to mid-October of 2009. The vaccine distribution had been such that by early October the only people in Marshall County West Virginia who had obtained a vaccine were health care workers.


During the first week of October 2009 an outbreak of H1N1 began in the Marshall County school system in Cameron, WV (located in the eastern part of the county). None of the students had been vaccinated by that time so the disease ran its course. Marshall County then received an allotment of H1N1 vaccine and rather than allocate to uninfected areas a vaccine program was instituted in Cameron for the week of October 15, 2009. Participation was sparse since the outbreak was over in Cameron. The left over vaccine was not allocated to unaffected parts of Marshall County.


On Saturday October 17,2009 I went to my younger daughter’s house to take a Birthday present to my oldest grandchild. Dakotah was having her 14th birthday party that evening at the Moundsville roller rink. She also had a slumber party with seven of her friends at my daughter’s house that night. There had been no vaccinations in the Moundsville, Glen Dale, Mc Mechen, and Benwood communities (in the western part of Marshall County) at that time. By Tuesday October 20,2009 all seven party attendees were infected with H1N1. Dakotah’s brother Kamron also was infected with H1N1. My younger daughter was unaffected. During the week of October 19-23, 2009 absenteeism reached 50% in the western part of the Marshall County School system. My older daughter brought her three children from Ohio County to Dakotah’s party. They have also been infected with H1N1, but my older daughter and her husband have been unaffected.

The current schedule for vaccination in western Marshall County along with Ohio County is slated to begin during the first week of November 2009. Seems like the horse is out of the barn. THIS IS THE H1N1 FIASCO OF MARSHALL COUNTY WV.


Comments 12 comments

ehern33 profile image

ehern33 7 years ago

First and foremost I hope everyone is doing OK. My kids and grandkids are always easy targets for the flu already. In a high school here, if the student is coughing and has flu like symptoms, the student is given a mask and isolated until they are picked up. The school will not allow you to return until you are clear of symptoms (unmedicated) for 24 hours.

jiberish profile image

jiberish 7 years ago from florida

I hope all goes well for you and your family.

Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 7 years ago from Moundsville, WV Author


Everyone is AOK. I just thought it was ironic that the vaccine distribution was terribly mis-managed. Another great examply of government health care.

One other thing I noticed. I'm not sure if this is typical but the girls got flu about two to three days before the boys.

My older daughter manages a residential home for unwed pregnant teens. They have been unable yet to obtain their H1N1 Vaccine even though they are second in priority to health care workers.

Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 7 years ago from Moundsville, WV Author


Thanks everyone is pretty much over the flu by now. The cases seem relatively mild. At least not very long.

profile image

pgrundy 7 years ago

Tom--Glad to hear that you are all coping with H1N1 and your grandkids are recovering. I think what is most troubling about this outbreak is not so much the flu itself but how badly it was handled. I'm hoping that since it hit so early it will burn itself out as fast as it came on.

Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 7 years ago from Moundsville, WV Author

Thanks Pam for your sentiments. I agree it hasn't been handled very well.

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 7 years ago from United States

Tom, Sorry to hear your family has been ill but they are recovering which is the important part. Yes, this is another government fiasco. We have very little vaccine in Jacksonville, FL. So far my grandchildren are not infected. I am considered high risk so maybe hibernation would be a good plan for me!

Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 7 years ago from Moundsville, WV Author


I agree your best bet is to avoid as much contact as possible. I just went on the Marshall County Health Department web site and the next shipment of H1N1 vaccine is expectected November 2,2009. By that time the flu will have run its course here.

Michelle  7 years ago

Well, let me just tell you about my own personal problems with the Health Department. My daughter goes to Glen Dale Elementary. They are scheduled to have their vaccines on the 28th. Right now she is on a medication from a previous infection and her doctor advises that she doesn't get this shot until NEXT week. When I called the Marshall County Health Department they said that there is NO WAY that they can allow my daughter to get the H1N1 vaccine next week, eventhough she has a medical reason for not being able to get it tomorrow. They said that I will just have to wait until ALL of the schools in Marshall County have had a clinic, then when the shot if available to the general public I can take her at that time. Now, my daughter has an immune dificiency, cronic asthma, and is of low weight....all making her in a "high risk" category. They didn't even care! I agree that the Marshall Co. Health Dept. is totally mismanaging thes inoculations!

Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 7 years ago from Moundsville, WV Author


I wish you and your daughter well. Take good care of her. I think the whole country is up the creek without a paddle!!!!

I went to Glen Dale elementary from grades 6-8 myself.

bgamall profile image

bgamall 7 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

While in many cases, the disease was overblow, to many it was very real. My adult son got it in summer and drove himself to the hospital where he got Tamiflu.

Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 7 years ago from Moundsville, WV Author


H1N1 has pretty much ran it's course here. Unless we get a second round. I just hope it doesn't mutate.

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