CHICAGO – State Rep. Kam Buckner, D-Chicago, is highlighting an upcoming opportunity for free flu shots for community members.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has taught us all how disruptive respiratory illness and disease can be to our lives when a vaccine doesn’t exist,” Buckner said. “When it comes to the flu, we don’t have to have our lives disrupted because a safe and effective flu shot vaccine exists for people in our community regardless of whether someone has health insurance.”
The Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) is hosting a flu shot clinic on Monday, Oct. 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Woodhull Park, 7340 South East End Ave. Adult residents and children aged six months and older can get a flu vaccine at no cost, regardless of insurance status. Those with health insurance are encouraged to bring a copy of their insurance card. Although walk-ins are welcome, CPDH recommends making an appointment to avoid wait times. Appointments can be made online at CDPH’s GetVaxChi website, getvaxchi.chicago.gov.
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), flu season typically lasts from October to May every year. IDPH recommends that every person aged six months and older receive a flu vaccine in order to prevent an influenza virus infection. Symptoms of the flu include fever, respiratory difficulties such as a cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, extreme fatigue, headaches and muscle aches. Residents unable to attend the CDPH flu shot clinic can find other local flu vaccine providers from Vaccine Finder at vaccinefinder.org. Outside of receiving a flu shot, IDPH also recommends performing the 3 C’s on a day-to-day basis to fight the flu:
- clean – clean your hands frequently by washing your hands with soap and warm water
- cover – cover your cough and sneeze.
- contain – contain your germs by staying home if you are sick.
IDPH also warns against common misconceptions about flu shots and the flu vaccine. Common misconceptions include that the flu vaccine makes someone sick, which has been scientifically disproven, and that people only need to get a flu shot once. Due to rapid changes in influenza viruses, annual flu shot vaccines are recommended by medical professionals.
“Flu shots are available for everyone, regardless of health insurance status, and I highly recommend that children and adults in our neighborhoods receive a flu shot in order to help protect against the seasonal flu,” Buckner said. “Getting a flu shot can help protect yourself, your family, and your community.”