Seasonal flu shots are now available at all Mississippi State Department of Health county clinics. The vaccine is recommended for anyone age six months and older.
"The flu shot is your best protection against the flu," said MSDH State Epidemiologist Dr. Thomas Dobbs. "Seasonal flu usually peaks in January through March in Mississippi, but flu activity can occur even in the fall. Mississippians should take the flu seriously and get a yearly flu shot."
Those particularly at risk for influenza complications include young children, adults 50 and older, pregnant women, and those with chronic illnesses.
Seasonal flu vaccinations for adults are $25. Those 18 and under can receive seasonal flu vaccinations for $10 through the Vaccines for Children program.
High-dosage vaccinations for those 65 and older are available for $50. The pneumonia vaccine is also available for $72.
Medicare and Medicaid recipients are asked to bring their cards with them to the clinic.
Symptoms of seasonal flu include fever, cough, and often, extreme fatigue. Sore throat, headache, muscle aches, and a runny or stuffy nose are also often present. More severe symptoms and death can also occur.
While shots are the best protection, basic infection control measures can also reduce the spread of flu. These measures include covering your mouth when coughing and sneezing, staying at home when you or your children are sick, and washing your hands frequently.
To locate a county health department clinic in your area or for more information on flu and pneumonia, visit the MSDH website at www.HealthyMS.com.