Flu Vaccine Available NOW
The North Central Health District's 13 county health departments are now offering seasonal influenza (flu) vaccinations to the general public. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends a yearly flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older as the first and most important step in protecting against this serious disease.
The regular flu shot is an option to people 6 months and older. The nasal spray is available for non-pregnant, healthy people ages 2 through 49.
In addition to flu shots and nasal spray vaccine, some of our health departments also offer intradermal and High-Dose flu vaccines.
The intradermal flu vaccine is a shot that is injected into the skin instead of the muscle. It uses a much smaller needle than the regular flu shot, and requires less antigen to be as effective as the regular flu shot. This vaccine is approved by FDA for adults 18 through 64 years of age.
Fluzone High-Dose vaccine is designed specifically for people 65 years and older. This vaccine contains four times the amount of antigen contained in regular flu shots since immune systems become weaker with age.
Other than getting the vaccine, there are everyday preventive actions to stop the spread of the flu: wash your hands often with soap and water; cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you sneeze or cough and then throw it away; avoid touching your mouth, nose and eyes, since germs can pass this way and; avoid close contact with sick people. Most importantly, if you are sick with flu-like symptoms, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone to avoid spreading the flu to others.
All health department offer the flu shot and nasal spray. To check on availability of high dose vaccine or intradermal vaccine, call your local health department. Health Departments in the North Central Health District accept Medicaid, Peachcare, Wellcare, Amerigroup, Medicare Part B, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia, or a State Benefit Plan through United Healthcare or Cigna.
Once again, local health departments will offer flu vaccines in the schools. Vaccine will be available at no out of pocket expense, but will be filed on insurance if possible. Parents should receive permission slips from the school in the coming weeks. School-based vaccine clinics will start as early as mid-September in some counties. For more information on this program, call your child's school or visit www.northcentralhealthdistrict.com/flu.