People are getting flu shots earlier this year

People are getting flu shots earlier this year

WICHITA FALLS, Texas (TNN) - Pharmacies across Wichita Falls are distributing flu shots, but this year the shots started a little earlier than usual.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention says September and October is the best time to get the flu vaccine due to the peak being in December and January.

The CDC says this year it’s especially important to keep flu numbers down while medical professionals focus on treating COVID-19 patients.

“We’ve had quite a few people come in especially our senior population concerned about the flu this year,” said Joe Beard, a pharmacist at Harvest Drug and Gift.

“They are also concerned about COVID-19 and want to be protected the best they can from the flu virus.”

Jenna Johnson is the immunization charge nurse at the Wichita Falls Wichita County Public Health District.

While their offices are not ready yet to start distributing the flu shot, she says the calls have been coming in of people ready to get them.

“Due to the pandemic, individuals are encouraged to get the flu shot,” said Johnson. “Not only to protect themselves, but their loved ones, community, and especially those individuals who can not vaccinate yet.”

The push from the CDC is greater this year due to the current COVID-19 pandemic.

“Since the flu and COVID-19 are both respiratory illnesses they have very similar symptoms,” said Beard.

“It can be hard to distinguish between one or the other early on without doing tests, so it’s important to go ahead and get that flu shot so that your doctor might know or have a better idea of what your infection is faster and get you treated properly.”

The Wichita Falls Wichita County Public Health District plans to have their flu vaccines up and running by the end of September.

Copyright 2020 Texoma News Network. All rights reserved.