With frosty temperatures making their way to Arizona, winter has finally arrived. While we make plans to usher in the New Year, one thing we don’t want to start off 2017 with is the flu virus. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), influenza viruses have begun to surge in recent weeks with a handful of states experiencing regional activity.
The CDC’s Weekly Influenza Surveillance Report shows Arizona has localized activity to date; however, influenza outbreaks are expected to increase in the coming weeks. Additionally, the Walgreens Flu Index, which is compiled using retail prescription data for antiviral medications used to treat influenza across Walgreens locations nationwide, shows that flu activity in the neighboring state of Nevada is high.
The flu shot is the best protection you can get against influenza virus. To help avoid the transmission to yourself and others, the CDC recommends that everyone over the age of six months gets the shot, especially children under 4, adults over 50 and pregnant women. According to pharmacists, it takes about two weeks after vaccination for protection to set in, so now is the time to get the shot.
Before getting vaccinated, it is important to talk with your doctor or pharmacist and choose the right vaccination for you and your loved ones. The following types of flu shots are recommendations for the 2016/2017 season:
- Trivalent (3-strain): Protects from the three most common flu strains. Recommended for anyone 6 months and older.
- Quadrivalent (4-strain): Protects against three of the most common flu strains plus one additional strain. Recommended for anyone 6 months and older.
- High-Dose: Designed to deliver a stronger immune response. Recommended for anyone 65 years and older.
- Preservative-free: Does not contain any traces of thimerosal/mercury. Recommended for pregnant women and those allergic to mercury.
At Walgreens, getting a flu shot could mean saving someone’s life – and not just your own. Walgreens Get a Shot. Give a Shot. campaign has provided more than 15 million life-saving vaccines over the past three years. For every flu shot administered at Walgreens pharmacy, Walgreens donates a polio or measles vaccine to a child in need in a developing country. By working with the UN Foundation’s Shot@Life campaign, Walgreens is increasing the number of people vaccinated against preventable diseases in underserved communities around the world.
If you haven’t gotten your flu shot yet, there’s no better time to do it. With walk-in appointments available at pharmacies throughout metro Phoenix, getting one is easily accessible and convenient — making it simple to just stop in whenever it’s convenient for you. Better yet, flu shots are covered under most insurance plans.
Don’t delay another day — get your flu shot today!