From now through November, flu shots are available at St. Luke’s primary care clinics during regular clinic hours. To make it convenient to receive the vaccination, anyone may call to schedule an appointment during clinic hours or receive the flu shot during a previously scheduled appointment.
Each year about 1 in 5 people will get the flu and more than 200,000 hospitalizations result from flu-related complications. With the influenza virus circulating at a higher rate than normal during the flu season, receiving the flu vaccination is the best way to reduce the risk of contracting the flu virus and spreading it.
“There’s no way to predict the effectiveness of the annual vaccine in advance, but even if it’s modest, it saves lives,” said Dr. Andrew Thompson of St. Luke’s Infectious Disease Associates. “It may seem too early to get vaccinated, but it’s not. It’s critical that everyone receive a vaccine before the flu starts circulating.”
The flu strain is different every year and it affects people differently. Even healthy people can get very sick from the flu and spread it to others. The Centers for Disease Control recommends that everyone starting at the age of 6 months receives a flu vaccination.
Flu shots are covered by almost all insurance plans and Medicare.