Flu season is fast approaching, and the best way to protect yourself and your family is to get a flu shot.
The virus can be particularly harmful and sometimes even fatal to over-65s, pregnant women and sufferers from chronic illnesses, as these groups are all particularly vulnerable.
A staggering 95 percent of all fatalities were found to have belonged to a risk group - yet more than half had not been vaccinated.
Buchanan County residents age 18 and older who are not pregnant are encouraged to participate. However, many people only reach for the drug when symptoms already have set in.
There are many misconceptions surrounding the flu vaccine, leading to many people not taking it.
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"While we focus a lot on personal protection, the other benefit of vaccine is that, by getting it, you are less likely to spread the flu to others", Schaffner added. "They all have fevers, chills, coughs". "If you put it off - still get vaccinated, of course - but now is an excellent time to get vaccinated", Schffner said. "Anyone that you know will be around babies you want to make sure they have that flu vaccine", said McNichols. Second-year College student John McHale acknowledged that while he no longer believes flu shots can give a person the flu, he often puts off getting the shot and does not make it a priority.
The flu vaccine's effectiveness varies from year to year, but for those who still get the flu, the symptoms are milder than in those who haven't been immunized. The needle-fearing don't have an excuse either - after advising the public to avoid the nasal spray version of the flu vaccine for the last two years, the CDC has given it the green light this season. "So those of us who are healthy, if we can keep ourselves healthy and get the influenza vaccination we're also protecting those around us", says Gillen.
This delayed reaction may also contribute to ideas that vaccinations do not effectively prevent flu.
There will also be mass walk-in flu clinics available at various locations in the county.
"At Okt-FLU-ber Fest 2017, a total of 435 vaccines were administered", Adams said. Medicare, TennCare, and select other insurance providers can be billed and some people may be eligible for free or reduced cost.