Flu shots available now

MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - The 2017 flu season is here, and doctors say now is the time to get your flu shot.

Stats from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show from 2015 to 2016, an estimated 5 million illnesses were prevented thanks to vaccinations. Experts recommend you get your flu shot before the end of the month. Flu activity usually begins in October and can last until May. A pharmacist at Walgreens says the flu shot can reduce the time you're sick and severity of sickness.

"The importance of the flu shot is that it pre-disposes your body to the antigens that are in the live flu, so that if you do come in contact with the live flu virus, your body is prepared," pharmacist Ivan Griggs says.

Griggs says Medicare will pay for a flu shot for those over the age of 65.