HUNTSVILLE — Persons who have not yet been vaccinated against the flu can receive a free vaccine at the Scott County Health Department on Wednesday, December 5.

The local Health Department is participating in the “FightFluTN” vaccination event, and director Art Miller said every member of the community is urged to receive a flu shot.

“Getting a flu vaccine is the best way to protect yourself, your family and others from the flu and help keep our community healthy,” Miller said. “The flu can make you very sick, keep you away from work, school and other activities, put you in the hospital or even take your life.” 

Persons wishing to receive a flu vaccine should visit the Health Department, located adjacent to the Scott County Courthouse, between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Wednesday. Miller said access will be easy, with short wait times.

Flu cases have already been reported in Scott County, and are expected to increase in the weeks ahead. The vaccination is recommended for everyone over six months of age. The flu vaccine is especially important for infants, young children, pregnant women, adults over age 50 and persons with chronic medical conditions.

During last year’s severe flu epidemic, a total of 185 children died across the United States. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, 80 percent of those children had not received a flu vaccination.

While some people who get vaccinated still get sick, flu vaccination has been shown in several studies to reduce the severity of illness. During the 2016-2017 flu season, the CDC estimated that vaccination prevented 5.3 million illnesses and 85,000 flu-associated hospitalizations.