MDG holds flu mass vax event

  • Published
  • By Airman Cade Ellis
  • 23rd Wing Public Affairs

The 23rd Medical group hosted its annual mass flu vaccination event at the Hoffman Auditorium from Oct.17 - Oct. 18, 2023.


The wing-wide event allowed the Flying Tiger medics to quickly and efficiently administer the influenza vaccine to roughly 2,000 Airmen over just two days. 


“The goal of distribution, especially for the flu vaccine, is to get active-duty service members in and out as fast as possible so they can return to work without any delay or interruption in their normal duties,” said Capt. Jennifer Tomlinson, 23rd MDG pharmacy flight commander. “This way services and readiness won't be interrupted.”  


The flu is a deadly disease that can spread very quickly making mass vaccinations like this crucial to enabling an increased chance of herd immunity, Tomlinson further explained. Herd immunity decreases the chances of the virus spreading and can also mean lessened effects on the body if caught by an individual.


The event also allowed medical personnel to improve the mass distribution skills they would need in an unexpected event, or deployed environment. 


“I think it's about getting the repetitions for how mass vaccinations are going to happen,” said Tech. Sgt. Jason Sampson, 23rd Health Care Operations Squadron, pharmacy flight chief. “In a deployed environment it may not necessarily be something we have time to plan for weeks in advance, so it's about the muscle memory and being familiar with the materials you will need.”


The 23rd MDG hopes to not only continue this event for years to come in order to provide efficient services during flu season, but also to keep strengthening their skills enabling them to be mission-ready for any scenario.


“This is an event that we would like to continue because it does hone our skills every year and makes sure we are still refreshed,” Tomlinson said. “Holding it every year will help us make sure that all of our medics are fully prepared and capable of handling mass vaccination sets or mass distribution sites when we need it there for emergencies.” 


Airmen still in need of their flu vaccination can receive it at the Immunizations Clinic. The Immunizations Clinic can be reached via the appointment line at 229-257-2778.