Milton, FL - The Florida Department of Health in Santa Rosa County (DOH-Santa Rosa) would like to remind everyone that it is not too late to get a seasonal flu shot. A flu shot is one of the easiest and safest ways to protect yourself against the flu. Annual flu vaccines are recommended for everyone over the age of six months, especially those with chronic medical conditions such as diabetes, asthma, and heart disease, pregnant women or women who plan to become pregnant, and individuals with compromised immune systems, such as those living with HIV.
According to the Florida Department of Health, Division of Disease Control and Health Protection, Influenza A (2009 H1N1) has been identified as the predominantly circulating strain of flu this season, not only in Florida but nationwide. The 2013-2014 flu vaccine includes the component for 2009 H1N1. Flu symptoms include fever/chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue. Some individuals may also experience vomiting and diarrhea. Complications from the flu include ear and sinus infections, bronchitis, and pneumonia. These can be serious and life threatening.
Flu shots are still available at the health department for a $30 fee, and are covered by Medicare for those who are eligible. The vaccine is also available free of charge for children ages 6 months through 18 years through the Vaccines for Children program; however, supplies of the free vaccine are limited and it is suggested that parents call the clinic at 983-5200 for vaccine availability and clinic hours.