Though it's still summer, Springfield residents can start preparing for flu season. Seasonal influenza (FLU) immunizations will be offered to Springfield residents age 18 and older from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday, Sept. 23 and from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 24 at the Sarah Bailey Center, 30 Church Mall.
A 'seniors only' clinic will be held from noon to 1 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 19, also at the Sarah Bailey Center, following the senior meeting that morning.
No appointments are necessary for any of the clinics. The immunizations are free to seniors with a Medicare Part B card; others will incur a $10 charge. Those attending the clinics are reminded to wear short sleeves if possible. The immunizations are provided by the Springfield Township Board of Health and the Madison Health Department.
According to the Madison Health Department, the 2013-14 flu vaccine offers protection against A/California(H1N1), A/H3N2/Victoria and B/Massachusetts, the expected strains of seasonal flu. It takes up to two weeks for protection to develop after the shot and protection may last for up to one year.Seasonal flu vaccine is recommended by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for everyone over the age of 6 months. The CDC states: “Vaccination is especially important for people at higher risk of severe influenza and their close contacts, including healthcare personnel and close contacts of children younger than 6 months. Everyone should get the 2013-2014 seasonal influenza vaccine.”