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County Health Officials Use Flu Clinic for Pandemic Drill

By Eileen Buckley

Buffalo, NY – Erie County workers rolled up their sleeves for influenza shots Thursday helping the County to prepare for a possible flu pandemic.

WBFO'S Eileen Buckley attended the "flu clinic" at the Main Place Mall in downtown Buffalo. Click the "listen" icon above to hear her story now or use your podcasting software to download it to your computer or iPod.

We often hear about government agencies holding disaster drills, preparing for a potential terrorist attack or natural disaster. But this time, Mick Kubik -- assistant director of administration with the Erie County's Health department -- says they want to make sure the community is ready for a possible flu outbreak.

For months, federal, state and local health departments have been gearing up for an anticipated flu pandemic. The State Health Department supplied one thousand, real doses of the flu vaccine to the county, so it could hold a mass vaccination.

Dan Nevreath Junior is the with the county's fire safety division and serves as a regional strategic national stock pile coordinator in Western New York. He says offering the flu shot to workers allowed them to create a practice drill for county nurses, staff and other first responders in case of a flu pandemic.

There are no clear answers as to when or even if an actual flu pandemic will occur. But US health officials say we are due for a new strain that could prove deadly for some.