JACKSON, Miss. – It’s flu season, and the preventative shot for children is now available at all county clinics.
The Mississippi State Department of Health is recommending that anyone six months of age and older get the seasonal vaccine.
“The flu shot is absolutely your best protection against the flu,” said MSDH State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers. “The vaccine takes one to two weeks to produce immunity, and although flu season usually peaks in January through March, it sometimes reaches high levels as early as December. Getting your flu shot now makes sure that you’re protected in time.”
This year, however, adult flu shots will no longer be available at the county clinics, with the exception of individuals that are uninsured or high risk.
Nearly 200,000 hospitalizations occur nationwide due to the flu andup to around 49,000 deaths can occur as a result of the illness.
Individuals 18 and under who are eligible for the Vaccines for Children program or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) can get the vaccine for $10.
Getting vaccinated is the best thing to do to prevent getting the flu, however, make sure to practice healthy living measures such as covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze, stay at home when you or your children are sick, and wash your hands frequently.
For a list of county health department clinics in your area visit the MSDH website.