Soccer Champions Mia Hamm and Brandi Chastain Kick Off National Effort to
Increase Seasonal Flu Vaccination Rates for Eligible Kids and Families
NEW YORK, Aug. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- MedImmune, Women's Professional Soccer
(WPS) and the American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) today officially
launched "Don't Play with the Flu,"(TM) a national health awareness campaign
that aims to highlight the importance of getting a seasonal influenza
vaccination every year. "Don't Play with the Flu" kicks off today in New York
City with a one-of-a-kind soccer clinic led by soccer legends and moms Mia
Hamm and Brandi Chastain.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises that the
single best way families can help prevent the seasonal flu is by getting a flu
vaccine - every year - for those individuals who are eligible to receive it.
The CDC recommends that children 6 months through 18 years of age be
vaccinated annually against seasonal flu and that eligible individuals be
immunized as soon as the seasonal vaccine becomes available, which can be as
early as August and September.
"We know a vaccine is the best way to help protect ourselves from the flu,
so my family and I get a seasonal flu vaccine as soon as we can every year,"
said Mia Hamm, international soccer legend and proud mother of 2-year-old
twins. "That way we can concentrate on all the other things we regularly do to
stay healthy on and off the field and in our busy lives."
The campaign reminds families of one key soccer term, G.O.A.L., when
thinking about seasonal influenza prevention:
-- Get a seasonal flu vaccine every year for eligible family members.
-- Options are available. Talk to your healthcare provider about what
type of flu vaccine - the shot or the nasal spray - is right for you
and your family members.
-- Avoid germs and illness. Wash hands often, cover sneezes and coughs
with a tissue or arm sleeve, avoid those who are sick, and keep
yourself and family members home when sick.
-- Lead a healthy lifestyle with plenty of sleep, proper nutrition,
frequent exercise and plenty of liquids.
"Along with all the things that parents know are important for helping
keep their kids healthy - like washing hands and getting enough sleep -
influenza vaccination should be at the top of the list. It's a smart defense
to help protect our kids - and our families - from seasonal flu," said Anat R.
Feingold, M.D., a pediatric infectious disease expert. "And because kids can
spread the flu, including at school, it's important that parents ask about an
annual flu vaccine as soon as it is available. Back-to-school and sports
physicals can be the perfect opportunity."
According to the CDC, each year, as many as 60 million Americans get the
flu, and the resulting complications cause more than 200,000 hospitalizations.
Children between 2 and 17 years of age are twice as likely to get the flu as
adults and commonly need medical care. Flu can also impact school, with one
analysis showing students missed approximately 38 million school days due to
seasonal flu in one year.
The campaign offers families information, resources, and updates through
DontPlaywiththeFlu.com. Parents and kids can find interactive content,
including a quiz about seasonal flu, educational information, and insights
into the lives of soccer stars, moms and role models Hamm and Chastain. The
campaign also aims to educate families about the importance of seasonal flu
vaccination for eligible individuals through informational brochures at WPS
stadiums, media events and soccer clinics in WPS franchise cities, and
directly to AYSO members and families around the country.
"'Don't Play with the Flu' reflects MedImmune's commitment to supporting
healthy families," said Tony Zook, president of MedImmune. "We're very pleased
to partner with Women's Professional Soccer, the American Youth Soccer
Organization, and of course Mia Hamm and Brandi Chastain, to bring this
important preventive health message to families across the country this flu
As a part of the campaign, MedImmune has become a sponsor of WPS, the
world's premier women's professional soccer league, and AYSO, a nationwide
non-profit youth soccer organization that develops and delivers quality youth
soccer programs to approximately 600,000 players. MedImmune is the presenting
sponsor of the 2009 WPS Championship in Los Angeles this Saturday, Aug. 22,
and will also present the "Defender of the Year" award at the WPS All-Star
Game in St. Louis on Sunday, Aug. 30. MedImmune manufactures FluMist
(Influenza Vaccine Live, Intranasal), the nasal spray flu vaccine against
seasonal influenza for eligible individuals 2 - 49 years of age. See important
safety and eligibility information below.
For more information about today's event, including time and location,
please contact Paddi Hurley, Fleishman-Hillard, 917-743-2290 or
Important Safety and Eligibility information for FluMist
Who may be eligible for FluMist (Influenza Vaccine Live, Intranasal)?
FluMist is a vaccine approved for the prevention of certain types of
influenza disease in children, adolescents and adults 2-49 years of age.
FluMist may not protect everyone who gets it. FluMist is for intranasal
Who may not be able to get FluMist?
FluMist is not right for everyone. FluMist must not be given to: people
with history of hypersensitivity to eggs, egg proteins, gentamicin, gelatin or
arginine; people with life-threatening reactions to previous influenza
vaccinations; and children and adolescents receiving aspirin or
aspirin-containing therapy. Children less than 24 months of age are not
eligible for FluMist.
The following people may not be able to get FluMist or may be able to get
it only in certain situations: people with asthma or active wheezing, or
children less than 5 years of age with recurrent wheezing; people with a
history of Guillain-Barre syndrome; people with a weakened immune system;
people with long-term medical conditions including heart disease, kidney
disease, and metabolic diseases, such as diabetes; and pregnant women.
If a child falls into one of these groups, a healthcare provider can
decide if FluMist is right for that child.
What are the most common side effects of FluMist?
Most common side effects included runny nose or nasal congestion, sore
throat, and fever. For a full list of side effects, please see section 6.1 in
the following product information.
Please see the complete product information.
For more information, please visit www.FluMist.com.
MedImmune, the worldwide biologics business for AstraZeneca PLC (LSE:
AZN.L, NYSE: AZN), has approximately 3,100 employees worldwide and is
headquartered in Gaithersburg, Maryland. With an advancing pipeline of
promising candidates, we aim to be the next revolutionary force in
biotechnology by delivering life-changing products, industry-leading
performance, and a tireless commitment to improving patient health. For more
information, visit MedImmune's website at www.medimmune.com.
About Women's Professional Soccer
Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) is the premier women's soccer league in
the world and the global standard by which women's professional sports are
measured. The Inaugural Season kicked off on March 29 and runs through August
30, 2009, with WPS teams based in the Bay Area, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles,
New Jersey/New York, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C. The league's eighth and
ninth franchises in Philadelphia and Atlanta will begin play in 2010. For more
information, visit www.womensprosoccer.com.
About American Youth Soccer Organization
The American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) is the largest single-entity
youth soccer association in the U.S. with nearly 600,000 players and 225,000
volunteers. AYSO develops and delivers quality youth soccer development
programs in a fun, safe environment based on the Six Philosophies of Everyone
Plays , Balanced Teams, Open Registration, Positive Coaching, Good
Sportsmanship and Player Development. For questions about AYSO, please contact
Sahar Milani at 310-727-5421 or SaharMilani@ayso.org.
/CONTACT: Karen Lancaster, MedImmune, +1-301-398-5864,
firstname.lastname@example.org; Paddi Hurley, Fleishman-Hillard, +1-917-743-2290,
/Web Site: http://www.medimmune.com /
ST: New York
IN: HEA MTC
-- AQ64061 --
3361 08/20/2009 08:00 EDT http://www.prnewswire.com