Influenza season starts now! Protect yourself and your loved ones by getting vaccinated.
What is influenza (flu)?
Influenza (flu) is a respiratory illness caused by viruses that attack the lungs, nose, and throat. These viruses are very different from those that cause stomach upset and diarrhea or the “stomach flu”. Flu symptoms can be mild or severe, but typically cause a cough, sore throat, body aches, and fever. Usually, influenza is more severe than a cold, and symptoms start very suddenly. Most healthy people will recover from influenza without complication, but certain people are at risk for severe complications such as pneumonia, bacterial infections, and hospitalization. Children under the age of 2, adults over 65, pregnant women, and people with chronic health conditions are most at risk for developing serious complications from the flu.
Who should get vaccinated?
It is recommended that everyone 6 months of age and older get vaccinated against influenza every year. Children between 6 months and 8 years of age may need a second dose to be fully protected. Your Health Care Provider can help you determine if your child needs two doses this season.
When should I get vaccinated?
As soon as it is available. The typical flu season begins in October and lasts through April. It can take up to two weeks to build immunity after vaccination, but you can benefit from the vaccine even if you don’t receive it until after the flu season starts.
Can I get the flu from the flu vaccine?
No. You may develop a mild fever or have general discomfort for a short time after vaccination. This is a sign that your body is developing an immune response to the vaccine; it is not the flu. Because there are so many viruses circulating around the time flu season begins, it is possible to get sick with a different virus around the same time you get vaccinated against the flu.
What type of flu vaccine is available this year?
All flu vaccine available this season are quadrivalent vaccines. Quadrivalent vaccine contains four strains of influenza (two A strains and two B strains). High Dose Quadrivalent vaccine is available for individuals over the age of 65. Each strain of the high dose vaccine contains four times the amount of antigen than the standard dose, which is thought to develop a stronger immune response for older adults. Wright County Public Health offers quadrivalent standard dose and quadrivalent high dose vaccine. FluMist can be used for patients age 2 through 49 years with no other contraindications. FluMist will not be available through Wright County Public Health; we are only offering injectable vaccine at this time.
Where can I get my flu shot?
You can come to any WOW Program site to receive your flu vaccine when services become available again. We accept most insurance plans and are able to bill Medicare.