Brunswick County Health Services will begin offering flu vaccines on Oct. 1. Nurses will also be administering flu shots at Brunswick County Schools and various locations throughout the community this season.
It is estimated that each year approximately 5 percent to 20 percent of U.S. residents get the flu, and more than 200,000 individuals are hospitalized for flu-related complications. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends annual flu vaccinations for everyone six months of age and older. Children younger than five years old and adults 65 years old or older, pregnant women, and people with underlying medical conditions are all at increased risk of severe illness or complications from the flu.
The single best way to help prevent vaccine preventable diseases is to get vaccinated. To help prevent the spread of influenza and other viruses, everyone should cover his or her nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing, and promptly dispose of the tissue in a trash can. If tissues are not available, people should cough or sneeze into their upper sleeves, instead of their bare hands. Hands should be washed frequently with warm, soapy water for 10-15 seconds, or cleaned with hand sanitizer when water is not available. Household areas should be cleaned with household detergents, such as bleach or alcohol when appropriate, to keep them sanitized. Avoiding crowds, limiting travel and working from home when possible can all also help prevent the spread of illness.
“It’s the most important thing you can do to protect both yourself and your family from the flu,” said Health and Human Services Executive Director David Stanley.
The flu shot clinic will begin on Oct. 1 at Brunswick County Health Services Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. until noon and 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. No appointment is needed. Regular flu shots are $40 while the high-dose vaccine, recommended for people 65 years old or older, is $59. Health Services accepts cash, checks, credit cards, Medicaid, Medicare, Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Cigna, Medcost, Tricare and United Healthcare.
Vaccines will be administered to students at Brunswick County Schools on selected dates. Parents must complete permission forms before the vaccination can be given.
For more information, contact Health Services at 910-253-2250.