Free Flu Shot Clinic Planned for Wednesday, October 29

Local health officials are doing their part to make sure area residents are prepared for the upcoming flu season.

A free walk-in flu shot clinic is planned for 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday, October 29, at the West Hall Winnemucca Convention Center.

The flu clinic is sponsored by the office of the Humboldt County Community Health Nurse; Humboldt General Hospital is also lending its support to the event.

Local residents may simply "walk in" to the event and receive their flu shot. No appointment is necessary.

Inactivated flu vaccine will be available for persons age 6 months and up; flu mist may be available for some persons up to age 49.

While the timing of flu is very unpredictable and can vary from season to season, flu activity most commonly peaks in the U.S. sometime between late November and March. However, seasonal flu activity can begin as early as October and continue to occur as late as May.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that people get vaccinated against flu soon after the vaccine becomes available, preferably by October.

It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against flu.

Those children aged 6 months through 8 years who need two doses of vaccine should receive the first dose as soon as possible to allow time to get the second dose before the start of flu season. The two doses should be given at least 4 weeks apart.

Flu is a serious illness that causes approximately 200,000 people to be hospitalized each year.

In addition to getting vaccinated, the CDC also recommends everyday preventive steps like staying away from sick people and washing your hands to reduce the spread of germs. If you are sick with flu, stay home from work or school to prevent spreading flu to others.

Additionally, people with flu-like symptoms should wait to travel until at least 24 hours after their fever has subsided without the use of fever-lowering medications.

Those who become ill while traveling should postpone traveling home until they are well.

For more information about seasonal flu, visit www.cdc.gov/flu/index.htm.

For flu information that is more specific to Nevada, please visit the Division of Public and Behavioral Health at www.health.nv.gov.

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