Free Flu Shots Given at Local Schools

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With a recent drop in temperature, it's time to start thinking about flu season.

Free flu shot clinics kicked off at schools across the region Tuesday.

"We are vaccinating the students and staff who are interested in getting a flu vaccination,” said Nancy Taylor with the Washington County Health Department. “We do this every year, we go through schools, all of the different schools in Washington County and the other counties are doing the same across the state."

Faculty, staff and students in the Greenland School District had an opportunity to get a free flu shot administered by the Washington County Health Department.

The seasonal flu vaccine is not required for children to attend school but it is highly recommended.

Regardless of age, several students say they understand the importance of getting vaccinated.

“I could get sick and it would be worse because I would miss a lot of school and this way I don`t really have to miss anything,” said Amber Hunt, an eighth grade student.

Taylor said she has heard several misconceptions about the vaccine.

“It cannot give you the flu,” Taylor said. “Some people getting it for the first time may have some side effects, feeling like they are coming down with the flu but it`s just a temporary effect and it`s not giving you the flu.”

The vaccine comes in two forms, a nasal mist and a shot.

Both forms of the vaccine fight against H1N1 as well as two other strains of the virus.

"It`s more important to get your flu shot than to get sick," said Hunt.

Students will be given a consent form with the date that the vaccine will be given and a fact sheet about the seasonal flu vaccine to show their parents. If parents want their children to receive the vaccine, they must sign and return that form.

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