Free potassium iodide tablets available Aug. 9 from Pennsylvania Department of Health

HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Department of Health is again providing free potassium iodide, or KI, tablets on Thursday, Aug. 9, to help Pennsylvanians be prepared for public health emergencies involving nuclear facilities.

Pennsylvanians who live, work or attend school within a 10-mile radius of one of the state’s five nuclear power plants can get free potassium iodide, or KI, tablets.

Taken as directed during a radiological emergency, KI can help protect the thyroid gland against harmful radioactive iodine.

Individuals should only take KI tablets when directed to do so by state health officials or the governor.

Four 65-milligram tablets will be provided to each adult. Smaller doses will be given to children, based on their age. Individuals can pick up KI tablets for other family members or those who are unable to pick them up on their own. Directions detailing when to take the tablets and how to store them will also be provided at each location.

Anyone can take the tablets as long as they are not allergic to KI. They are safe for pregnant women and those who are breastfeeding, people on thyroid medicine, children and infants. Individuals who are unsure if they should take KI should ask a healthcare provider.

Individuals who are unable to get tablets during the Aug. 9 distribution can pick them up any time at county and municipal health departments or state health centers.

Pennsylvania’s five nuclear power plants are closely regulated, secure and well-maintained. The facilities are: Beaver Valley Power Station, Limerick Generating Station, Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station, Susquehanna Steam Electric Station and Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Station.