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Bears Get Flu Shots, Tim Couch While Children, Elderly Can't

By Benjy Lipsman in News on Oct 22, 2004 2:26PM

Man, the Bears can't cut a break anywhere. Even the Lake County Health Department is hassling the team for giving Bears players flu shots, despite nation-wide shortages. Dale Galassie, executive director of the health department, sent letters to companies asking them to only give shots to high risk employees and to donate or sell additional vaccines to the country. Lake County, where the bears offices and practice facility are located, has closed all of its flue vaccination centers due to the shortages. Those few in existence are supposed to be reserved for the very young, sick and elderly. Galassie questioned why young, fit professional athletes would be offered the vaccine.
"I certainly wouldn't anticipate them meeting the Centers for Disease Control's high-risk category unless they interpret that they're under risk because of an extreme travel schedule," he said. "But they have their own plane. Everyone should be stepping up... and giving it to those who need it. I'd like to know why an athlete in top shape is being given a flu shot."
Chicagoist is willing to bet that the health department would have "overlooked" this had the Bears been 4-1 at the moment. But instead they're playing like they're very young, sick or elderly.

2004_10_sports_tim_couch_draft.jpgThere's no word on whether Tim Couch will be offered a flu shot as part of his physical exam today. The Bears are bringing in the first player drafted in the 1999 NFL draft. Couch was cut by the Cleveland Browns last winter and by the Green Bay Packers during training camp. But the 27 year old QB claims to be fully healed from shoulder tendonitis. Could be possibly be any worse that what the Bears currently have on their roster?