It’s time to schedule your flu shot: What you need to know this year

Flu season: It's time to get your flu shot
Published: Sep. 23, 2022 at 3:45 PM EDT
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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - It’s now officially fall, which means it’s also officially flu season. Health departments and pharmacies everywhere are getting ready to roll out flu shots.

CDC officials are recommending you get your flu shot a little earlier this year.

Health leaders recommend rolling up your sleeve by the end of October.

“The flu vaccine is extremely important to help mitigate the spread of the flu,” said Kathleen Napier, director of nursing at the Cabell-Huntington Health Department.

Napier anticipates flu case numbers to be up this year.

“We’ve worn masks most of the time,” Napier said. “A lot of people now have their masks off. I would anticipate it to be higher because of that factor.”

Numbers for just regular routine care in general went down because of COVID, because people just weren’t wanting to go out. Routine care includes those flu shots.

“We really want people to maintain their regular visits with their physician, particularly people who would have compromising conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease,” Napier said.

Napier says COVID taught us a lot, and there are some tools from the pandemic that can help us during flu season, like wearing masks and extra hand washing.

“We see we’ve reduced our numbers of flu when we’ve been wearing our masks, so I think it’s a great idea that when our numbers get high it’s okay to wear your mask,” Napier said. “That seems to help a lot.”

Flu shots are recommended for everyone six months and older.

The Cabell-Huntington Health Department is making it easy for you.

There will be a free flu shot clinic from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30.

They’ll continue to offer flu shots throughout October. For more information, tap here.