The Mission Neighborhood Health Center is offering free swine flu vaccinations for the next three days.

“The best way to avoid a worst case scenario is vaccination,” says Fernando Gomez-Benitez, the center’s deputy director. “It’s better to prevent than to take a risk.”

The swine flu, or H1N1 virus has now spread to 46 states, killing 1,000 people in the process, the Center for Disease Control reports.

The vaccine is in short supply, however, and the clinic only has 1500 vaccinations to give out over the next three days, says Gomez-Benitez.

More could be on the way via the Department of Public Health as soon as next week.

Health insurance is not required, no appointment is necessary and the clinic doesn’t inquire about patients immigration status.

“It’s a campaign to vaccinate people without insurance,” Gomez-Benitez says. “This is a community wide effort.”

Vaccinations will be given in the conference room of the center at 240 Shotwell St. during the following hours:

Thursday, October 29, 2009 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Friday, October 30, 2009 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Saturday, October 31, 2009 from 8 a.m. to noon.

, say Gomez-Benitez

Bryan Gibel

Born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Bryan has a background in investigative reporting for newspapers and the radio. He is working the health beat for Mission Loc@l.

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