Shelby County Health Department offering free flu vaccines amid high rate of emergency room visits

According to the CDC, flu activity is currently highest in the South and Southeast.
According to the CDC, flu activity is currently highest in the South and Southeast.(MGN)
Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 8:03 PM CST
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SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. (WMC) - The Shelby County Health Department is offering free flu vaccinations at no charge during a special statewide “FightFluTN 2022″ vaccination event on Wednesday, Nov. 9.

The influenza vaccine will be offered on a walk-in basis between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. at all Shelby County Health Departments.

No appointment is needed. Clinic locations are listed below:

  • Shelby County Health Department Immunization Clinic, 814 Jefferson Ave, 38105
  • Cawthon Public Health Clinic, 1000 Haynes, 38114
  • Collierville Public Health Clinic, 167 Washington St., 38017
  • Hickory Hill Public Health Clinic, 6590 Kirby Center Cove, 38118
  • Millington Public Health Clinic, 8225 Highway 51 North, 38053
  • Shelby Crossing Public Health Clinic, 1826 Sycamore View Road, 38134
  • Southland Mall Public Health Clinic, 1287 Southland Mall, 38116

The Shelby County Health Department monitors flu activity in Shelby County by tracking hospital emergency department visits attributed to influenza-like illness. Last week, between Halloween and Nov. 6, 5.9% of all emergency department visits were for influenza-like illnesses.

That is more than three times higher than the rate reported this time last year.

Flu incidence is rising nationwide. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) weekly flu report shows that the flu season hit six weeks earlier than usual this year, and flu activity is currently highest in the South and Southeast.

“The influenza vaccine is proven to reduce the risk of serious illness and death from influenza,” said Dr. Michelle Taylor, Shelby County Health Department Director. “It is safe and effective for children as young as six months. Children under five, people aged 65 and older, and people with compromised immune systems are at the highest risk for severe flu complications; however, the flu can make anyone seriously ill and symptoms can last for up to two weeks. That’s why we recommend the flu vaccine for everyone six months and older.”

The flu vaccine can be safely administered along with the COVID-19 vaccine.

The COVID-19 vaccines are available at the Health Department’s Immunization Clinic at 814 Jefferson Avenue, and the Shelby Crossing Clinic at 1826 Sycamore View Road and will be made available to #FightFluTN participants.

Please bring your CDC COVID-19 vaccination card if you would like to also receive the COVID-19 vaccine or booster dose.

For more information about influenza in Shelby County, please visit the Shelby County Health Department flu activity page.

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