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SEATTLE, Wash - (Oct. 15, 2007) -- The Seattle Seahawks will team up with Virginia Mason Medical Center to kick off a flu immunization event to underscore the importance of getting immunized against influenza at a staff tailgate party on Tuesday, Oct. 16 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Lindeman Pavilion, Volney Richmond Auditorium, 1201 Terry Avenue (VM downtown campus). At the heart of the event is an effort to provide influenza vaccine to health care workers as an important patient safety priority and raise the awareness for the community about flu immunization.

"The Seahawks have a long history of giving back to the community and we're glad they can join us to draw attention to the importance of flu immunization," said Joyce Lammert, MD, chief of medicine at Virginia Mason. "We have an obligation to protect patients against harm. Having our staff vaccinated against the flu will save lives."

Nationwide, it is estimated that 36,000 people will die of influenza in the U.S. each year. The Centers for Disease Control recommends that health care workers get immunized against influenza. The medical center is focused on attaining a 100 percent immunization rate.

The Seahawks organization has supported influenza immunization to keep its team healthy during the football season. Seahawks players David Kirtman, Kevin Hobbs and Ben Obomanu, along with the Sea Gals will come out to rev up support.

"If one of our players is out due to the flu, then the whole team is affected. We understand how important immunization is not only to our players, but our community," said Tod Leiweke, CEO of the Seahawks.

Contact:
Alisha Mark
Virginia Mason
(206) 341-1509

Suzanne Lavender
Seattle Seahawks
(206) 381-7852

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