TULSA, OK – [October 6, 2015] – The Tulsa Health Department is now offering seasonal flu vaccinations. Health officials remind residents that getting vaccinated against the flu is the single best way to prevent the flu. The flu vaccine can keep you from getting the flu, make the illness less severe if you do get it, and keep you from spreading the virus to family and other people.
The vaccine is recommended for everyone over six months of age. Persons at high risk of serious complications from flu are especially advised to get the flu vaccine, including older people, pregnant women and those with asthma, diabetes, or other chronic conditions. Parents and family members of babies less than 6 months of age and people who live with or care for anyone at high risk for complications from the flu, including health care workers, should also get the vaccine.
The flu vaccines will be offered while supplies last to anyone over the age of six months on a walk-in basis Mondays through Thursdays 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. and Fridays 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at the following Tulsa Health Department locations:
James O. Goodwin Health Center | 5051 S. 129 E. Ave., Tulsa, OK
Central Regional Health Center | 315 S. Utica, Tulsa, OK
North Regional Health and Wellness Center | 5635 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Tulsa OK
The flu vaccine will also be offered at these locations:
Bixby Community Health Center | 8120 E. 126 St., Bixby, OK
Call (918) 369-3155 for clinic dates and times
Collinsville Community Health Center | 1201 W. Center, Collinsville, OK
Call (918) 596-8650 for clinic dates and times
Sand Springs Health Center | 306 E. Broadway, Sand Springs, OK
Call (918) 591-6100 for clinic dates and times
THD currently accepts Cigna, Community Care, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Health Choice, Medicare, SoonerCare and Medicaid for immunizations. Please bring your insurance card and photo ID.
The cost for the flu shot is $25. Payment may be made in the form of cash, check or credit card. The vaccine is available at no cost for those who qualify, including uninsured adults 65 years and older and children who qualify for the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program while supplies last.
The 2015-2016 seasonal flu vaccination requires only one shot for most individuals. Children under age nine who have not received two flu immunizations before July 1, 2015 will need a second dose 28 days (or later) after receiving the first dose.
There are two types of flu vaccines available this year: the trivalent and the quadrivalent. This season’s trivalent flu shot reflects changes in the influenza A (H3N2) virus and the influenza B virus as compared to the 2014-15 season. The new quadrivalent vaccine includes an additional strain of influenza B virus protection. A high dose vaccine designed for seniors age 65 and older is also available upon request while supplies last.
The most important thing is to get a flu vaccine every year. Talk to your doctor or nurse about the best options for you and your loved ones.
“Flu vaccinations are the single most effective way to protect yourself from the flu,” said Dr. Bruce Dart, Tulsa Health Department director. “Being sick with influenza can result in missed work, missed school, doctor visits and even hospitalization.”
Influenza, commonly referred to as the flu, is a contagious disease that spreads around the United States every year, usually between October and May. Flu is caused by influenza viruses, and is spread mainly by coughing, sneezing, and close contact. Anyone can get flu. Flu strikes suddenly and can last several days. Symptoms vary by age, but can include: fever/chills, sore throat, muscle aches, fatigue, cough, headache and runny or stuffy nose. Flu can also lead to pneumonia and blood infections, and cause diarrhea and seizures in children. If you have a medical condition, such as heart or lung disease, flu can make it worse. Each year thousands of people in the United States die from flu, and many more are hospitalized.
Individuals are encouraged to call the Flu Information Hotline at 918-595-4500 for more information. The hotline has recorded information about the flu in English and Spanish, including flu vaccination clinic locations and hours of operation, and accepted insurance and other methods of payment. For more information please visit www.tulsa-health.org.