Flu shots are available.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, this year’s vaccine includes protection for swine flu (H1N1) and two other influenza viruses (H3N2 virus and an influenza B virus). It is an inactivated vaccine (containing killed virus), which means you cannot get the flu from the shot. However, side effects include soreness, redness or swelling where the shot is given, low-grade fever and aches.
Although the vaccine is recommended for everyone, two groups the CDC says should get protected are:
- People 50 years of age and older
- People of any age with certain chronic medical conditions (which includes people with HIV)
Those who should not get the vaccine:
- People who have a severe allergy to chicken eggs.
- People who have had a severe reaction to an influenza vaccination.
- People who developed Guillain-Barre syndrome within six weeks of getting an influenza vaccine.
- Children less than 6 months of age (influenza vaccine is not approved for this age group)
- People who have a moderate-to-severe illness with a fever (they should wait until they recover to get vaccinated.)
This year the shots are widely available and are offered at both doctors’ offices and retail locations. (Last year, Oak Lawn area doctors were reporting trouble in obtaining the vaccine).
Among Oak Lawn retailers offering the vaccine:
3802 Cedar Springs Road at Oak Lawn: Walk-ins welcome. Available 24 hours a day.
3418 McKinney Ave. at Lemmon: Walk-ins welcome. Easiest when the most pharmacists are on duty from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Go to website to find when flu clinics taking walk-ins are available at any store.
4207 Lemmon Ave. at Douglas: Best to call to make sure pharmacist is available. 214-528-0328. She will be in Mon. Oct. 4 from 3 p.m.-10 p.m.; Tues. Oct. 5 from 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
5659 Lemmon Ave. at Inwood: Call anytime to schedule appointment. 214-252-0121.