Autumn is upon us, so now is the time to think about protecting yourself from the flu. You can take a few simple steps to protect yourself and the people around you: Wash your hands often with soap and water, cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough, stay home if you feel sick, and get your flu shot from the Norwalk Health Department!
The Health Department will hold two clinics to provide seasonal flu shots to the public this year: Thursday, September 25, 10 am to 12 pm, and Tuesday, September 30, 5 pm to 7 pm. Both clinics will be held at the Health Department (137 East Avenue, Norwalk), and no appointment is necessary.
For those people who cannot attend these community clinics, the Health Department will be open for walk-in hours on Tuesdays from 1 pm – 3 pm, beginning in October (except on Federal holidays, when the office is closed).
The flu vaccine protects against seasonal and H1N1 flu, and anyone older than 6 months of age is encouraged to get their flu shot. When coming for their flu shot, all clients should try to wear short sleeves for easy access to the injection site.
Flu shots through the Health Department are covered by Medicare Part B, ConnectiCare, and Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield. Residents with this insurance coverage are asked to bring all insurance cards for verification of benefits. Otherwise, standard seasonal flu shots cost $25 per person.
The Health Department also offers the high-dose flu vaccine to clients age 65 and older. These clients can choose between the high-dose vaccine or the standard seasonal flu vaccine. The high-dose version of flu vaccine is designed to boost older patients’ immune response to influenza, because these patients tend to have a weaker immune response to the standard flu vaccine compared with younger patients, and they are at greater risk for serious complications from influenza. This high-dose vaccine costs $50 per person and is covered by Medicare Part B.
If you have a question about the flu vaccine, call your physician. For questions about the community flu clinics or to inquire about arranging a vaccination clinic at your worksite, please call the Norwalk Health Department at 203-854-7776.