Low-cost flu vaccinations will be available in Payson, through the county, starting at the end of November.
The Gila County Office of Health will be offering the vaccinations from Nov. 27 to Dec. 3 as part of The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Influenza Vaccination Week.
The CDC wants to raise citizen awareness of the importance of flu vaccinations and to inspire greater use of them throughout winter months.
"Getting vaccinated is the single best way for people to protect not only themselves against flu, but their loved ones as well," said CDC Director Dr. Julie Gerberding.
Vaccinations will be available at the county health office in Payson at 107 W. Frontier St. from 8 to 11 a.m., and 1 to 4 p.m., Lucinda Campbell, registered nurse with Gila County Health and Community Services-Payson said.
She said her primary days for giving vaccinations are Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, but if someone drops in on a Monday or Friday and needs one, she won't turn them away.
The cost is $30 for adults.
Adults on Medicare Part B will receive the shot at no charge if they bring in their card.
Children 6 months to 18 years old can also get vaccinated at no charge.
Vaccinations are recommended for anyone 6 months or older.
The CDC said pregnant women, along with those with chronic illnesses like heart disease, lung or kidney disease, and diabetes and the people who care for them are at the highest risk for complications from the flu.
Each year, 36,000 people die, and more than 200,000 are hospitalized from the flu, the CDC said.
Because of the risk of complications from influenza, the Gila County Division of Health is also offering nasal flu immunizations for the live-attenuated influenza virus, or LAIV, this season for healthy children between 2 and 18 years of age.
The Gila County Division of Health said young children, especially those under 2 years old, have one of the highest rates of hospitalizations because of the flu.
Last year there were 68 deaths associated with children less than 18 years of age who caught the flu, the CDC said.
Of those, 94 percent had not been vaccinated.
The Gila County Division of Health recommends the following people be vaccinated:
- Children 6 months to 4 years of age.
- Children 6 months to 18 years of age receiving long-term aspirin therapy.
- Children 2 to 18 years of age with long-term health conditions such as heart, kidney or lung disease, diabetes, anemia or weakened immune system caused by cancer or steroid therapy.
- Children 2 to 18 years of age living with a child less than 6 months old or an adult older than 65 who is chronically ill.
For more information, call the Gila County Office of Health in Payson at: (928) 472-5367, or in Globe at: (928) 402-8894.