City launches

HOUSTON The Houston Department of Health and Human Services (HDHHS) has launched, the city's new website for Houston-specific information about both seasonal and H1N1 influenza.

In addition to the department's public education and free flu vaccine clinics, HDHHS is providing this central source of information to help parents, business owners, teachers, people with health issues, community organizations, and travelers find information, as well as updated dates, times and locations for flu vaccinations in the city area clinics. A Spanish language version of the website will be available within the next two weeks. features regular video updates from Dr. David E. Persse, Houston's Public Health Authority, that address the current status of seasonal and H1N1 influenza in Houston.

"Houstonians are taking the flu seriously and have made a substantial difference in preventing the spread of infection by practicing good hygiene and getting vaccinated," Persse said. "The fight to prevent the flu is not just about keeping students in school and employees at work. It's a commitment to saving lives. It's important that Houstonians keep up their fight against the potentially fatal viruses."

HDHHS expects both H1N1 and seasonal flu vaccine to be widely available in the coming weeks, and encourages Houstonians to visit for vaccine updates as well as specific flu prevention information.

An interactive component of allows visitors to submit their questions regarding seasonal and H1N1 flu by clicking the "Ask a Question" link on the home page. Visitors can also review questions and answers submitted to date.

"It's important for Houstonians to keep up their guard," Persse said. "The flu traditionally comes in waves, and just as one virus begins to decline, we expect the other to build. Our best defense is to stay informed, take action, and continue to work together to Fight the Flu Houston."

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