Flu season is here and the Harford County Health Department is offering vaccinations to help residents avoid the disease.
The county is not offering a series of flu vaccine clinics this season because the vaccine is so widely available this year, Harford County Health Department spokesman, Bill Wiseman, explained. Instead, the county will provide the vaccine by appointment and on a walk-in basis on specific days through December.
He said several years ago, when H1N1 was a major concern, the scarcity of the vaccine prompted county health officials to offer a series of flu vaccine clinics to ensure people got vaccinated as quickly as possible. This year, however, scarcity is not a concern.
"We don’t see any need to activate public clinics," Wiseman said.
Appointments for the flu shot can be made by calling 410-612-1774. Appointments are available between 3 and 5:30 p.m. Oct. 16 and 23, Nov. 20 and 27 and Dec. 18 at the Harford County Health Department’s Edgewood Site, located at 1321 Woodbridge Station Way.
Walk-ins are welcome for shots only at the same location between 2 and 4 p.m. Oct. 19, Nov. 2, 9, 30 and Dec. 7, 14, 21 and 28.
Whether walking in or scheduling appointment, the cost is $20 for middle school age through adult and no charge for elementary-age children. Medicare part B is accepted. Only exact cash or personal check are accepted.
On Saturday, free flu shots will be offered at five clinics around the Baltimore County, including one at Holabird Middle School, 1701 Delvale Ave. in Dundalk.
The free vaccines will be available from 9 a.m. to noon (or while supplies last) on Oct. 13.
Free clinics will also be held at the Drumcastle Government Center in Towson, Hereford Middle School in Monkton, Lansdowne Middle School and the Randallstown Community Center.
To prevent the spread on contagious viruses, including seasonal flu, Baltimore County health department officials recommend the following tips:
- Frequently wash your hands with soap and water
- Always get an annual flu shot
- Cover your cough and sneeze
- Take time off if you have symptoms
- Seek care if your symptoms get worse
For more information on the seasonal and H3N2 flu, visit www.flu.gov.