Seasonal influenza vaccinations are now available for children and qualifying adults at all Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) county health centers.
Flu vaccination is recommended for everyone six months of age and older as the best protection against the virus. Flu season typically starts in November and lasts as late as March in Mississippi, but usually peaks anywhere between December and February.
“In Mississippi, we are already seeing increased flu activity, including reports of increased hospital admissions for flu-related illness and increased emergency department visits,” MSDH State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers said. “We recommend that all Mississippians get their flu shots every year because this can be and is beneficial in protecting against severe illness, complications, and hospitalizations.”
According to Byers, both the flu vaccination and the COVID-19 vaccination or boosters can be given at the same time.
Those 18 and under who are eligible for the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program can receive a flu vaccination for $10. Insurance, Medicaid, and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) are accepted for children’s flu shots. A list of all VFC providers can be found here.
Adults who are underinsured or uninsured and who meet certain high-risk criteria qualify for an adult flu vaccination at all MSDH county health department clinics. Flu shots for insured adults are now widely available through private physicians, pharmacies, and retail centers.
While vaccination is the best protection against the flu, the MSDH encourages Mississippians to adhere to other safety measures, such as covering your mouth when coughing and sneezing, staying at home when you or your children are sick, and washing your hands frequently.