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Influenza, commonly referred to as the flu, is a contagious disease. Although it is often confused with other illnesses, especially the common cold, influenza is a more severe disease than the common cold and is caused by a different type of virus.
Since February 2010, the CDC (Center for Disease Control) has recommended that everyone 6 months of age and older get a flu vaccination each year.
The reasoning behind this universal approach to flu vaccination in the U.S. is to expand protection against the flu to more people and protect those who are at high risk from getting serious flu related complications and to prevent the spread of flu to others who may be at high risk for developing complications.
Typically, influenza is transmitted through the air by coughs or sneezes and spreads around the world in seasonal epidemics. Vaccine’s are made new each year and are based on the flu virus seen abroad and in the U.S. It is important to receive a flu shot each year because it acts as a booster.
LifeWorks Erie, formerly the Erie Center on Health and Aging, has been offering influenza vaccinations (flu shots) in Erie and Crawford counties for over 35 years. Beginning this fall and moving forward, we will be offering flu vaccinations to adults and children age 9 and older who weigh over 90 pounds. Community clinics are held throughout the region, at hundreds of convenient locations, as well as our main office at 406 Peach Street.
LifeWorks Erie wouldn’t be able to accomplish this endeavor without help. A seasonal staff of over 20 and a team of over 200 local nurse volunteers graciously give their time to make these clinics possible. The campaign is also supported by our community partners including the Erie County Department of Health, UPMC, and the United Way just to name a few.
The cost of the vaccination is usually covered by your primary health insurance and LifeWorks Erie will bill all major health insurance providers. When getting vaccinated at one of our clinics, no appointment is necessary and there is no up-front cost. Simply present your primary health insurance card and we do the rest.
The best time to get vaccinated is in the early fall. Not only will you help protect yourself from influenza, you will also help avoid spreading influenza to others. To find a convenient location near you to obtain your flu shot, please click here.
All proceeds from the “Don’t Let the Flu Bug You” vaccination campaign remain in Erie County. The revenue generated helps support an extensive array of LifeWorks Erie programs and services for area older adults.