Lampitt Bill to Promote Flu Vaccination Among Seniors Clears Panel

Legislation Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt sponsored to promote seasonal influenza awareness among New Jersey seniors was advanced Monday by an Assembly panel.

The bill (A-3890) would require the Department of Health to prepare and publish online printer-friendly information about the flu vaccine for older adults.

“Older New Jerseyans are far more susceptible to serious flu-related complications. Because their immune systems are weaker, the flu can result in hospitalization or even death among seniors,” said Lampitt (D-Camden/Burlington). “Supplying members of this specific population with the information they need to protect themselves and those around them can keep older residents healthy and save lives.”

The information would include items such as:

· How vaccination can help prevent the flu in older adults;
· The availability and efficacy of the flu vaccine for older adults;
· A recommendation that seniors consult with their physicians regarding the flu vaccine; and
· The particular individual and community benefits of vaccination among older adults sharing close quarters, such as residents of continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs)

Each CCRC in New Jersey would be required to post the information in a conspicuous public place in the facility.

“Given how quickly the flu can be transmitted in environments where many people regularly share a space, it’s especially important that residents of senior housing communities get vaccinated and reduce the risk of the influenza virus spreading,” said Lampitt.

The bill was advanced by the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee.