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Time to get a flu shot

Special to the Star

Cooler weather and shorter days mark the transition from summer to fall and it’s also a sign that flu season is here. It is critical that all Floridians do their part to prevent getting seasonal flu and spreading it to others by getting the flu vaccine as early as possible. Flu strains change from year to year, so it is important to get the flu shot every year.

Flu vaccines are available by appointment at the Port St. Joe and Wewahitchka health department locations. Call 850-227-1276 today to schedule your appointment or call your healthcare provider.

The annual flu vaccine is safe and remains the most effective way to protect yourself and your loved ones. The flu vaccine is recommended for everyone six months and older, including pregnant women. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for your body to develop protection against the flu so get your flu shot early, preferably before Halloween.

Gulf County Health Department logo

In addition to protecting yourself, receiving the flu vaccine helps prevent the flu virus from spreading to our most vulnerable populations, including older adults, pregnant women, children ages newborn to five and people who have existing medical conditions.

Each year, the DOH-Gulf School Health Team partners with the Gulf County School District to kick off a flu vaccination campaign. The campaign provides seasonal flu vaccinations to students and staff during regular school hours at each school location.

The Florida Dept. of Health recommends taking these everyday precautions to help keep you protected from the flu this season:

  • Stay home if you are sick. Keep children home from school and daycare if they are sick.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap is not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your mouth, nose, and eyes.
  • Disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects.
  • Cough or sneeze into your shirt sleeve, elbow, or tissue. Throw tissues away immediately after use.
  • Social distancing and wearing a face mask or cloth face covering may also help to prevent the flu.

 Remember to get your #VaccineBeforeHalloween and help keep Florida #FluFree this season by getting you and your loved ones vaccinated against the flu. For more information about the flu and where you can get the flu shot this year, please visit www.FluFreeFlorida.com.

The Florida Department of Health, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

Follow us on Twitter at @HealthyFla and on Facebook. For more information about the Florida Department of Health please visit www.FloridaHealth.gov