Don't wait, vaccinate before holidays

Published On: Nov 09 2012 12:10:25 PM EST
Flu shot influenze vaccine shot
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. -

The Oakland County Health Division (OCHD) encourages all residents to get a flu shot and other vaccines before gathering with friends and family for holiday celebrations.

"If you want to protect yourself against the spread of infectious diseases, now is the time to get vaccinated," said Kathy Forzley, manager/health officer of OCHD. "It can take about two weeks after receiving a vaccine for the body to provide protection."

Vaccines are available for $16 at Health Division offices from noon – 8 p.m. Monday and 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. The offices are located at 1200 N. Telegraph Road, Building 34 East, Pontiac, and 27725 Greenfield Road, Southfield.

No appointment is necessary and walk-ins are accepted. Walk-in payment options include Medicare, Medicaid and cash (no credit cards, checks or money orders). 

Residents may register for an appointment and pay online at oakgov.com/health with Visa and MasterCard only, or Medicare and Medicaid. Residents may also choose to pay cash at the time of appointment. 

Influenza is a life-threatening disease. Elderly and infants are at greater risk than others who contract the illness. There were six flu-related pediatric deaths in Michigan last flu season. Nationwide, flu activity is beginning to increase, and there have been confirmed cases in southeast Michigan already this flu season. It is recommended that everyone 6 months and older get the flu vaccine every year.

Flu can be spread to others up to about six feet away, mainly by droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk. Less often, a person might also get flu by touching a surface or object that has flu virus on it and then touching their own nose or mouth. To avoid this, wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.  The flu usually comes on suddenly and can cause mild to severe illness, and at times lead to death.

People who have the flu often feel some or all of these symptoms: 

For more information, call OCHD’s Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533, visit www.oakgov.com/health