Story last updated at 10/2/2012 - 1:10 pm
SITKA - Flu season is coming, so get your annual flu shot to protect your health. As part of our commitment to preventive care, the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium S'áxt' Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital will offer four special flu shot clinics in October.
Flu shots will be available for children and adults from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 5, Monday, Oct. 8, and Friday, Oct. 12. The shots are free for SEARHC's Native patients (non-Native patients may have to pay a fee depending on insurance). Please call ahead for an appointment.
The single best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends everybody older than 6 months get a seasonal flu shot each year, especially if they are in one of the groups at high risk for flu-related complications - young children age 5 or younger (especially age 2 or younger); pregnant women; people age 50 or older; people with chronic health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, cancer, heart and lung disease, etc.; people living in nursing homes or extended-care facilities; and people who live with or care for those at high risk for flu complications (including health care workers).
Since many Alaska Natives and American Indians had bad flu complications during the H1N1 flu pandemic three years ago, the CDC added Natives to the priority list for vaccinations. The CDC's list for who should be vaccinated is at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/keyfacts.htm and the priority list for people at high risk for developing flu-related complications is at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/disease/high_risk.htm.
To schedule an appointment for a flu shot, please call the S'áxt' Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital Outpatient Department at 966-8318.