Health Dept. promotes flu vaccines for NYers

City health officials promoted flu vaccinations at Concord Baptist Church of Christ Monday.



"I want all of you to get your flu shot today, and I want you to help us get the word out," said Mary Bassett, New York City's health commissioner.



According to officials, the flu shot is a potentially lifesaving vaccine. That's why the Department of Health is campaigning to get skeptics and non-skeptics alike in the vaccination chair.



Thousands of New Yorkers die from the flu every year, according to Bassett, but some residents fear side effects.



"Am I being used as a guinea pig?" Scottie Leaks, of Crown Heights, once asked, before she eventually became a flu-shot advocate. "Am I being given something that others aren't given? Is this part of a test?"



Now, Leaks is promoting the shots.



"It's very effective," she said Monday. "It works for you. It protects your family."



And the shot takes just a few minutes, according to advocates.



"It wasn't painful -- effortless," said Pastor Samuel Phillips. 


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