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The City Journals

Community Cares event outside city hall features flu immunizations, voter registrations and more

Nov 09, 2020 03:43PM ● By Carl Fauver

Taylorsville Community Cares organizer Lynette Wendel talks with a visitor at the event. (Courtesy of Lynette Wendel)

By Carl Fauver | [email protected]

The flu season now officially upon us is expected to be unlike any other, thanks to the ongoing complication of the coronavirus pandemic. Health care professionals throughout Utah and the rest of the country are on pins and needles, hoping the dual viruses will not overwhelm hospitals.

Due to these concerns, many medical experts believe influenza vaccination rates will be much higher this year. After all, that’s the vaccine we do have—with COVID-19 vaccines still nowhere in sight.

At a recent “Community Cares” event outside Taylorsville City Hall, Community Nursing Services provided flu vaccinations to 37 children and adults. Event organizer Lynette Wendel called the event a big success.

“We had about 120 people attend, after handing out fliers on residents’ doors and also publicizing it on social media,” Wendel said. “The flu shots were a big draw. But we also had volunteers there to register voters. The Happy Camper food truck served meals. Ocean Ice served snow cones. And we had drawings for a number of gift cards from Taylorsville businesses.”

Wendel is a member of the Taylorsville Planning Commission and also the Democratic candidate for the Utah House District 39 seat, held by Republican Jim Dunnigan.

Until last month, Anna Barbieri served with Wendel on the Planning Commission. She resigned that position when the four remaining city council members elected her to fill a vacated council seat. Barbieri was among those providing people with takeaways at the Community Cares event.

“Anna donated 200 face masks, made by her White Elegance clothing company,” Wendel said.

“[Community Cares] was a great event and I was glad to help Lynette out by bringing the masks,” Barbieri said. “People seemed to be having fun.” 

Several community members brought donations to Community Cares, particularly for dogs and cats at the Taylorsville-West Valley City Animal Shelter. Several large bags of dog food were donated, along with blankets, towels, toys and other pet supplies. 

Children also spent time at a craft table coloring paper bags and book markers.

“We made it so everyone handled their own crayons and materials,” Wendel added. “We took precautions to make it as safe [from the coronavirus] as possible.”

Operators of the CNS Immunization Program were also pleased to be a part of the event, as they strive to increase flu immunizations throughout Utah this year. CNS employs more than 450 seasonal staff members during flu season, providing services out of six locations in the state.

“Positive health outcomes are consistently attributable to increased vaccination rates within our communities,” said CNS Immunization Program Director Cory Fowlks, in an email. “On average, slightly less than 40% of adults are vaccinated against influenza each year. In order to mitigate the impact on health care systems during the current COVID-19 pandemic, public health officials are pushing for the goal to vaccinate at least 65% of American adults this season.”

CNS is a nonprofit organization that has served Utah communities for more than 92 years. As one of its many service lines, CNS is the state’s largest provider of onsite flu and vaccination clinics. The organization operates more than 1,800 clinics and provides more than 100,000 vaccinations each year.

To learn more about upcoming clinics or to schedule an on-site flu shot clinic, visit cns-cares.org/immunizations-flu-shots.  

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