Fall is almost here, and with it comes football, flannel, and flu shots. This year, it is anticipated that healthcare resources may be overwhelmed with the spread of COVID-19 and the flu occurring at the same time. Now more than ever, health officials say, it is important to get a flu vaccination.
“With the high incidence of flu-like sickness throughout the year, we are expecting a higher than normal amount of flu vaccines to be given during this flu season,” said Tonda Bradley, director of nursing at Fayette County Public Health (FCPH). “It is important to get your flu shot early so you will be protected when the flu gets here.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend getting a flu vaccine by the end of October before flu viruses begin spreading in the community, since it takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against flu.
Flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, doctor’s visits, and missed work and school due to the flu, as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations. The more people who get vaccinated, the more people are protected from the flu, including older people, very young children, pregnant women, and people with certain health conditions who are more vulnerable to serious flu complications.
Flu shots are an important preventive tool for people with chronic health conditions, according to health officials. Several studies have shown that flu vaccines can reduce the severity of illness in people who get vaccinated but still get sick.
Fayette County Public Health will offer flu vaccines starting with an extended hours clinic from 8:45 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 5. Beginning Tuesday, Oct. 6, flu shots will be available between 8:45 a.m. and 4 p.m. Due to COVID-19, flu shots will be offered by appointment only. Call 740-335-5910 to make an appointment.
The cash price is $25 for regular flu and $65 for high dose. Insurance is also accepted. For a list of accepted insurance providers, visit www.faycohd.org.
Fayette County Public Health is located at 317 S. Fayette St., Washington Court House.