(Des Moines, IA) –The Polk County Health Department will start hosting community flu vaccination clinics now through November 2014. The annual “drive-thru flu clinic” will be held on Saturday, October 4 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Polk County Health Department. The flu clinic schedule is available at http://www.polkcountyiowa.gov/health. Individuals wanting the flu vaccine will be able to visit our clinic on a walk-in basis. Clinic hours are Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 9:00 – 4:30 p.m. and Tuesdays until 6:30 p.m.
“The flu viruses are constantly changing, so individuals should get a flu vaccine every year to protect themselves against the most recent and common types of flu,” said Rick Kozin, director of the Polk County Health Department. “The vaccine you received last year may not protect you from this year’s flu strains.”
Flu seasons can be unpredictable and can be severe. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that each year more than 200,000 people are hospitalized from the flu, including an average of 20,000 children younger than five years of age. Complications from the flu can include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration and worsening of chronic health conditions such as asthma, diabetes or congestive heart failure.
“Anyone over the age of six months should receive the flu vaccine,” said Kozin. “The elderly, young children, pregnant women and individuals with chronic health conditions are more susceptible to serious health complications if they contract the disease.”
To speed up the process at the flu clinics, individuals can download the consent form from the Health Department’s web site at (http://www.polkcountyiowa.gov/health) and bring the completed consent form to the clinic. Consent forms are in both English and Spanish.
For updates or changes in the clinic schedule, please call the Polk County FluLine, (515) 286-3609. Most major insurance plans are accepted. Don’t forget to bring your insurance card to the clinic. The cost for those without insurance is $20.
For more information regarding the flu or flu clinics, please visit our web site at www.polkcountyiowa.gov/health