I wrote here  about our first disastrous attempt to vaccinate G for H1N1.  It was so traumatic (you know, for me) that I seriously considered skipping it and taking our chances.  But we’re going to Canada for the Olympics and taking our chances in an environment like that is just incredibly negligent.  So dh and I put our heads together and came up with a plan. 

Because we live in a community that eschew’s vaccination, the health dept had enough vaccine left over after several high-risk category vaccination clinics to hold a clinic open to anyone.  I went and got my shot while G was still in school to lay the ground work for DH, who would be bringing G with him after school.  While I was there, I asked what I could do to get G vaccinated since it was so bad last time the nurse couldn’t do it.  I was speaking with different nurse practitioner with a very no-nonsense type attitude who also happened to be familiar with autism, as she had a friend with an autistic child and had seen meltdowns first hand.  She totally hooked me up. 

Before I left, I had filled out all the paperwork DH and G would need so there would be no delay in the waiting room.  She had DH call and give a 15 minute warning and arranged to have an exam room open so they could go straight in.  Then we lied.  We told G he was only going to watch DH get his nasal spray, which got G into the exam room.  The nurse told DH how to hold G effectively, vs how I tried it the first time where G’s head was still mobile, and she just squirted away.  It didn’t need any of the cooperation the nurse during my attempt seemed to require.   G was incredibly upset and we felt terrible about tricking him.

We still needed to return for a second dose and were very stressed about how to accomplish this.  Because we tricked him into the building for the first dose, we knew he wouldn’t walk in on his own no matter what we told him.  We called to make the second appointment, and again the staff really went out of their way to help us.  I went ahead again and filled out all the paperwork.  We were directed to the back door of the building, which had a back staircase up to their floor.  This meant G didn’t recognize the building from the back and because he hadn’t been told anything other than DH was ‘running errands’ he didn’t balk at following along.  Until he saw the health dept door.  At that point he started clinging to door frames and desks in an attempt to stay out of the exam room they had waiting for us.  But DH was able to get him in the room and they inoculated him immediately.  The entire experience took maybe 3 minutes.

After each vaccination, we took him out for ice cream and candy to reward him.  He’s had several episodes the last week where out of the blue he’ll start crying and yelling at us for tricking him.  But as parents, this was something we had to do to ensure the safety of our child.

I’m glad this is behind us and we’ll be traveling to Canada knowing our family is fully vaccinated.  However, I’m not sure we’ll be going through this for the seasonal flu.  I think we may have a pandemic-only policy for the next few years.

Published in: on January 4, 2010 at 9:44 am  Leave a Comment  

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