Flu Strikes Early

October 9, 2013

“Get your flu shot as soon as it's available to get the most out of it,” said Michelle Bruner, Mercy Clinic Fort Scott director. “Each year, the influenza virus may change slightly so you need a new shot each season."

The vaccine needs about two weeks to form the antibodies that will protect you from the specific strains through the next flu season, so the sooner you get the shot the longer you are protected.

Two Flu Shot Clinics are scheduled for later this week. Visit Mercy Clinic Family Medicine Linn County on Friday, October 11th from 9 a.m.– 4 p.m. or Mercy Clinic Fort Scott on Saturday, October 12 from 8 – 11 a.m.

Walk-in flu shots are also available at Mercy Clinic Family Medicine Arma and both Mercy Convenient Care locations in Fort Scott. Cost is $25 if self pay. The clinic can bill insurance. If a Medicare patient, Medicare will allow the cost of the shot to be billed once per influenza season.

"The most effective way to ward off the flu is to get your flu shot and wash your hands frequently," says Mary Wynn, Mercy Hospital’s infection control nurse.

The Centers for Disease Control recommends that everyone six months and older should get a flu shot each season, and it is especially important for adults over 50, people in nursing homes or with chronic diseases and those who might transmit flu to any of these "high risk" groups.

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