Last month, the Rhode Island Department of HEALTH declared flu to be "widespread" in the state, which remains in effect. According to the department, there are approximately 14 flu-related hospitalizations per day and approximately 9% of emergency room visits during the past week have been for influenza-like illness.
The influenza vaccine being used this year is a highly accurate match for H3N2, the dominant flu strain in circulation. Flu vaccine is the most effective protection against the flu. Particularly for the elderly, vaccine can prevent hospitalization and death.
For those who receive the influenza vaccine but still get the flu, vaccine shortens the duration of the illness and makes symptoms less severe. It also lessens the chances that the infected person will spread the flu to others.
Immunization against the flu is especially important for healthcare workers, pregnant women, anyone older than 50 years of age, nursing or group home residents, and people with chronic conditions or weakened immune systems. Common chronic conditions include heart, lung or kidney disease, diabetes, asthma, anemia, and blood disorders. It is also especially important for those who live with or care for people who are at high risk for flu-related complications to be immunized.
How to get your free vaccine today:
What: Pneumonia, Flu and Tdap vaccines
Where: Joseph H. Gaudet School Cafeteria 1113 Aquidneck Ave (Enter from Turner Rd)
When: January 3th – 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Who: anyone 6 mos and older
Cost: No out-of-pocket expense. If you have insurance, bring your card. No money will be collected.